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Street Wrap: Today’s Top 15 Upgrades, Downgrades, Initiations

Block upgrade, Lyft downgrade and Verisk Analytics coverage resumption among today’s top calls on Wall Street

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Research analysts at Wall Street’s largest banks issue recommendations on whether a stock should be bought, held, or sold. The Fly’s team of financial market experts scours hundreds of research notes daily to uncover the best trading ideas. Check out today’s top analyst calls from around Wall Street, compiled by The Fly.

Top 5 Upgrades:

  • Macquarie analyst Paul Golding upgraded Block (SQ) to Outperform from Neutral with a $100 price target. With the shares "now de-rated and operating leverage flowing through," Block has improved upside/downside positioning across shares and fundamentals, Golding tells investors in a research note.
  • Northland analyst Gus Richard upgraded SolarEdge (SEDG) to Market Perform from Underperform. While acknowledging SolarEdge missed third quarter EPS estimates, Richard noted that it was due to foreign currency devaluation and a higher tax rate.
  • Deutsche Bank analyst Brian Mullan upgraded Dave & Buster’s (PLAY) to Buy from Hold with an unchanged price target of $48. In a tough macro environment, the risk/reward on Dave & Buster’s shares stands out, Mullan tells investors in a research note.
  • Barclays analyst Gaurav Jain upgraded Scotts Miracle-Gro (SMG) to Overweight from Equal Weight with an unchanged price target of $75. The analyst expects Scotts to "delever rapidly from here," even under a wide range of macro scenarios.
  • Goldman Sachs analyst Matthew Sykes upgraded Mettler-Toledo (MTD) to Neutral from Sell with a price target of $1,355, up from $1,120. The analyst says the stock’s "significant multiple compression" from the peak levels in the fourth quarter of 2021 better reflect the overall macro concerns and the company’s potential deceleration in growth for 2023.

Top 5 Downgrades:

  • Evercore ISI analyst Mark Mahaney downgraded Lyft (LYFT) to In Line from Outperform with a price target of $18, down from $41. The analyst says the "weak growth" in Lyft’s Q3 active riders is "very concerning" as is its acknowledged market share loss to Uber (UBER).
  • Wedbush analyst Seth Basham downgraded Williams-Sonoma (WSM) to Neutral from Outperform with a price target of $110, down from $190, ahead of quarterly results. Even though the analyst expects a slight beat for Q3, the darkening macro-outlook and heavily over-inventoried industry leads him to sharply reduce forward estimates.
  • Jefferies analyst David Katz downgraded Six Flags (SIX) to Hold from Buy with a price target of $24, down from $32. He believes "a more conservative approach is warranted" based on the increasingly negative economic outlook and his expectations for a "transition" Q3, Katz tells investors.
  • Wolfe Research analyst Truman Patterson downgraded Jeld-Wen (JELD) to Underperform from Peer Perform with a $7 price target. The stock is up 11% over the past two weeks, noted Patterson, who believes there are "some significant, developing pressures that will continue driving equity underperformance."
  • Deutsche Bank analyst Brian Mullan downgraded Jack in the Box (JACK) to Hold from Buy with an unchanged price target of $88 ahead of the fiscal fourth quarter results. "This is a Risk Reward and Valuation call, and there is not much more to it than that," Mullan tells investors in a research note.

Top 5 Initiations:

  • Morgan Stanley analyst Toni Kaplan resumed coverage of Verisk Analytics (VRSK) with an Equal Weight rating and $170 price target. While she views Verisk as "a high-quality business with a strong moat and attractive business profile," Kaplan notes that insurance end-market headwinds may persist in 2023 and she sees the current valuation as "fair.
  • Canaccord analyst Whitney Ijem initiated coverage of Taysha Gene Therapies (TSHA) with a Buy rating and $16 price target. The analyst argues that while there are "many recent gene therapy IPOs that are trading at a significant discount," not many like Taysha that have a pivotal stage lead program with "a robust and long-term data set," a second pipeline program with significant 2023 catalysts and a multi-billion dollar opportunity and an "interesting recent transaction" with a large pharma company that has "demonstrated interest in building out its gene therapy pipeline."
  • Deutsche Bank analyst Edison Yu initiated coverage of Planet Labs (PL) and BlackSky (BKSY) with Buy ratings and price targets of $7 and $3, respectively. Planet Labs and BlackSky are both generating substantial revenue now and have visibility toward future growth similar to software companies, Yu tells investors in a research note.
  • Raymond James analyst Timur Ivannikov initiated coverage of Kymera Therapeutics (KYMR) with a Market Perform rating and no price target. The analyst says early data in hidradenitis suppartiva could be inconclusive and may not provide the broader platform validation needed to get more constructive on the shares.
  • Canaccord analyst Whitney Ijem initiated coverage of Rocket Pharmaceuticals (RCKT) with a Buy rating and $53 price target. The shares "provide an opportunity to gain exposure to the gene therapy space in a diversified way," both on the technology and stage-of-development fronts, the analyst contends.
Keywords: analyst, analyst calls, upgrades, downgrades, initiations, research, wall street

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