Hot Stocks: TGT rises on upgrade; ABBV falls on downgrade; CEPH, PKI climb

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Analyst commentary stirred trading in Monday’s midday action. This included Target (TGT), which gained ground following an upgrade from Wells Fargo. Meanwhile, AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV) dipped after receiving an analyst’s downgrade.

Elsewhere, deal-making represented another notable driver. Celsius Holdings (CELH) soared after PepsiCo (PEP) took a stake in the company. At the same time, PerkinElmer (PKI) rose after selling some businesses and announcing strong quarterly results.

Gainers

Target (TGT) edged up 2% in midday trading, bolstered by an upgrade from Wells Fargo. The firm raised its rating on TGT to Overweight from Equal-Weight.

In making the upgrade, analyst Edward Kelly cited the recent decline in the retailer’s stock price, saying it offers a chance “to pick up a proven share gainer into an underappreciated earnings recovery at the right price.”

Elsewhere, Celsius Holdings (CELH) represented another midday gainer after PepsiCo (PEP) agreed to take a stake in the energy drink company. Shares surged 13% on the news.

Under terms of the agreement, PEP will take over distribution for CELH and make a cash investment of $550M. As part of this, PEP will purchase convertible preferred stock, giving it an estimated 8.5% ownership on an as-converted basis.

In other news, earnings news and the sale of some businesses sent PerkinElmer (PKI) 8% higher in midday trading. PKI beat expectations on both its top and bottom line. The firm also raised its 2022 forecast.

Meanwhile, the company also announced that it will sell its applied, food and enterprise services businesses to investment firm New Mountain Capital. The deal calls for $2.45B in total consideration.

Decliner

An analyst downgrade put pressure on AbbVie (ABBV), which fell 2% as Atlantic Equities removed its bullish view on the biopharma company. The firm reduced its rating on ABBV to Neutral from Overweight.

Analyst Steve Chesney attributed the decision to “less upside to the long-term new Immunology growth story.” Chesney also noted limited near-term upside in the areas of hematology and aesthetics.

To track Wall Street’s best- and worst-performing stocks throughout the session, head over to Seeking Alpha’s On The Move section.

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