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10 Recent Upgrades from Top Analysts

When looking for new winning stocks, investors will often turn to the analysts. However, analysts often just maintain the same ratings so it’s hard to find fresh investing ideas. That’s why it’s a big deal if a company gets an upgrade from a trusted analyst, and when this happens investors should take notice. For example, HealthEquity, Inc. (HQY) share prices surged by 9% after Merrill Lynch analyst, Allen Lutz, upgraded the stock on July 19.

Here are 10 stocks that got upgraded recently by the top Wall Street analysts.

Stitch Fix, Inc. (SFIX)

On July 21, five-star analyst, Scott Devitt, upgraded the online personal styling service from a Hold to a Buy and set a $35 price target. The Stifel Nicolaus analyst said, “Despite the slowdown in active client growth, we are confident in management’s ability to drive healthy ARPU growth in the intermediate term by continuing to improve keep rates through stronger personalization (Style Shuffle), high-quality client adds, and healthy retention.” He has a 71% success rate and on average gets a 23% return per rating.

SFIX has a ‘Moderate Buy’ analyst consensus, with 4 Buy ratings vs 3 holds over the last three months. It has an average price target of $37, suggesting analysts believe share prices could jump by 38%.

Applied Materials, Inc. (AMAT)

AMAT got a vote of confidence yesterday from Goldman Sachs analyst, Toshiya Hari. Hari upgraded the semiconductor company to a Buy and raised the price target from $48 to $56. Its price target suggests upside potential of 17%. “We see AMAT benefiting from improved outlook due to leading WFE share position as well as favorable benefits from exposure to memory along with AMAT's increased willingness to deploy capital.”

The stock boasts a ‘Strong Buy’ analyst consensus and $51 average price target, indicating 7% upside potential.

Weight Watchers International, Inc. (WW)

Top D.A. Davidson analyst, Linda Bolton Weiser, upgraded the weight loss program on July 19 to a Buy. She raised the price target from $25 to $32, suggesting 29% upside potential. “WW has already reported improved recruitment trends, chatter on app download data indicates stabilization of subscriber trends, and our proprietary analysis of Reddit comments indicates keto interest could be fading. Our data also show improved sentiment toward the meeting experience in 2Q19 vs. 1Q19. We believe 2019 earnings risk is low,” she said.

However, the Street is cautious about WW. It has a ‘Hold’ analyst consensus and $26 average price target, suggesting 3% upside potential.

Skechers USA, Inc. (SKX)

On July 19, the shoemaker got an upgrade from Wedbush analyst, Christopher Svezia. He gave the stock a Buy rating and raised the price target from $31 to $46. He believes share prices could jump by as much as 18%. The analyst points to the company’s ability to manage expenses well in the past three quarters, and its focus on profitability as opposed to sales as the reason for the upgrade.

SKX has a ‘Moderate Buy’ analyst consensus and a $43 average price target, suggesting 10% upside.  

PriceSmart, Inc. (PSMT)

PriceSmart operates membership warehouse clubs in Central America and the Caribbean. Top Kansas City Capital analyst, Jonathan Braatz, upgraded PSMT to a Buy and set a $70 price target, demonstrating his belief that shares could rise by 13%. “The numbers have been getting stronger as the year has progressed. In June, PSMT reported that comparable-store sales rose 1.9% and, adjusted for currency, 4.7%. Still for the full year, we estimate this currency drag will be around $100 million,” he said. Braatz has an 83% success rate and a 17% average return per rating.

The Street is cautiously optimistic on PSMT. It has a ‘Moderate Buy’ analyst consensus and $76 average price target, suggesting 23% upside.   

KBR, Inc. (KBR)

The engineering company and former subsidiary of Haliburton was upgraded by Cowen & Co. analyst, Gautam Khanna, on July 19. The five-star analyst raised his price target from $23 to $31. Khanna has a 74% success rate and 14% average return per rating.

KBR has a ‘Moderate Buy’ analyst consensus and $28 average price target, indicating 8% upside.

American International Group, Inc. (AIG)

On July 18, William Blair analyst, Adam Klauber, upgraded the insurance giant to a Buy as he believes it has long-term earning potential. “While it is still on the early side, we expect to see signs of a turnaround that should manifest over the next several years. The current management team appears to have laid the groundwork for a long-term rebound with significant mix repositioning, a shift in underwriting strategy, and de-risking of the investment portfolio,” he said.

AIG boasts a ‘Strong Buy’ analyst consensus and $58 price target, suggesting 4% upside potential.

Upwork Inc. (UPWK)

Upwork is a global freelancing platform that facilitates collaboration between businesses and independent professionals. On June 26, Brent Thill of Jefferies upgraded his rating from a Hold to a Buy and set a $23 price target. “With the stock down 17% YTD and valuation at a 37% discount to peers, risk/reward has improved,” he said. The analyst has a 75% success rate and gets a 20% average return per rating," he said.

UPWK has a ‘Moderate Buy’ analyst consensus and $22 average price target, suggesting 31% upside.

Deckers Outdoor Corporation (DECK)

DECK got a nod of approval from Merrill Lynch. Five-star analyst, Rafe Jadrosich, upgraded the footwear designer to a Buy and raised the price target from $150 to $180, suggesting 3% upside. “We like HOKA growth and buybacks which ought to generate a continuation in EPS upside,” Jadrosich said. The analyst boasts an impressive 83% success rate and a 32% average return per rating.

The consensus among analysts is that DECK is a ‘Moderate Buy’. It has an average price target of $171.

Analog Devices, Inc. (ADI)

ADI is a semiconductor company specializing in data conversion, signal processing and power management technology. On June 10, Toshiya Hari also ugraded ADI from a Sell to a Buy and raised the price target from $101 to $114. “ADI, in our view, has exposure to multiple idiosyncratic revenue drivers. Specifically, we believe ADI's disproportionate exposure to the Comms Infrastructure end-market coupled with content gain opportunities in Automotive will drive growth that exceeds peers in the analog semiconductor space,” he said.

ADI has a ‘Moderate Buy’ analyst consensus and $116 average price target.