Microsoft (MSFT) received a higher price target Wednesday after strong fourth-quarter results, Walt Disney (DIS) was downgraded despite box office hits, and analysts started coverage on Chinese firms Baidu (BIDU) and Alibaba (BABA).
MicrosoftMicrosoft’s price target was raised to 60 from 58 at Stifel Nicolaus, and to 62 from 57 at BMO Capital Markets, after the tech giant reported better-than-expected fiscal-fourth-quarter results late Tuesday.
Microsoft’s Q4 earnings per share jumped 11% to 69 cents, crushing views for a dip to 58 cents. Revenue also came out ahead of expectations, fueled by cloud demand.
Microsoft shares gapped up 5.3% to 55.91, close to breaking out of a consolidation that started toward the end of last year.
IBD’S TAKE: Microsoft is seeing a big rise in cloud business, but Amazon Web Services is the leader. Amazon has much stronger overall fundamentals and share price performance than Microsft. IBD’s Leaderboard premium service has detailed chart analysis of Amazon.
Credit Suisse assumed coverage on Baidu with a 190 price target and outperform rating. The analysts also assumed coverage on Alibaba with an outperform rating and 114 price target.
On Tuesday, the Cyberspace Administration of China, China’s internet regulator, announced it would investigate Baidu after media reports alleged that illegal gambling websites use the search engine to promote their businesses.
Baidu shares fell 0.3% to 160.65 by the closing bell on the stock market today. Alibaba shares finished the day up 2% to 84.42.
Walt Disney was downgraded to hold by Stifel Nicolaus.
Disney has been having a blockbuster year. “Finding Dory,” its sequel to hit “Finding Nemo,” set the record for highest U.S. sales for an animated movie.
Disney fell 1.3% to 98.22 at the close.
F5 Networks‘ (FFIV) price target was raised to 115 from 110 by RBC Capital. The maker of data-center networking gear saw its shares jump Tuesday on speculation that private equity firm Thoma Bravo might buy the company.
F5 reports earnings after the close Wednesday. Analysts estimate revenue will grow 2% to $495 million, with earnings per share climbing 7% to $1.79.
Shares gained 0.7% at the close to 121.47.
The human resources software company Workday (WDAY) was downgraded to neutral by Citigroup. Workday shares rose 1.1% to 79.82, after falling out of buy range last week.
The fast casual cafe was initiated with an outperform rating and 250 price target at RBC Capital. Panera Bread (PNRA) shares climbed 1.6% to 210.04.