Friday’s Top Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades: Advance Auto Parts, AutoZone, Chesapeake, Dollar Tree, HP, Marvell and More

Friday morning futures were positive, with investors seemingly sanguine ahead of the weekend. After a fairly positive week, markets turned lower on Thursday ahead of the Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole Symposium. More hawkish commentary from members of the Fed lifted futures going into the conference, but there is still more to be seen as to what will come of it.

Across Wall Street, the focus this week has been the commentary from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, who will be speaking via videoconference at the annual Economic Policy Symposium on Friday in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Despite worries and the potential for a “taper tantrum” like we saw in 2013, the Federal Reserve is vowing to keep interest rates contained. Recent Fed commentary suggested that the tapering of the $120 billion per month purchase of government and mortgage debt could be in the works by the end of the year and purchases could be completed by the end of 2022. That could become clearer this week.

With major Wall Street firms still warning of the potential for impending 5% to 10% correction across the board, which may have seen beginning last week, it makes sense for investors to continue building some cash reserves into any market strength while repositioning portfolios for the balance of 2021.

24/7 Wall St. reviews dozens of analyst research reports each day of the week with a goal of finding new ideas for investors and traders alike. Some of these daily analyst calls cover stocks to buy. Other calls cover stocks to sell or avoid. Remember that no single analyst call should ever be used as a basis to buy or sell a stock. Consensus analyst target data is from Refinitiv.

These are the top analyst upgrades, downgrades and initiations seen on Friday, August 27, 2021.

Advance Auto Parts Inc. (NYSE: AAP): Morgan Stanley downgraded the stock to an Equal Weight from Overweight and has a $220 price target. That compares with a $222.47 consensus target and Thursday’s close at $208.82.

Applied Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: APLT): Goldman Sachs lowered its Neutral rating to Sell and cut the price target to $10 from $16. Shares last closed at $17.78, and the consensus price target is $44.17.

AutoZone Inc. (NYSE: AZO): Morgan Stanley downgraded it to Equal Weight from Overweight and has a $1,650 price target. The shares have traded between $1,085.85 and $1,666.63 in the past year and closed on Thursday at $1,588.90.

Big Lots Inc. (NYSE: BIG): Telsey Advisory Group downgraded from Outperform to Market Perform with a $72 price target. The $64.13 consensus target is higher than Thursday’s close at $54.25.

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