We are beasts of the calendar. January nurtures dreams and good intentions, while October is the month that slaps you round the face and demands you get a grip before the year is out.
US stock analysts are no exception, as can be seen by this chart from Morgan Stanley that is startling in how completely it fits our preconception about the cycle of hope and experience: Read more
Citi declared a few weeks ago it had three equity analysts focused solely on Apple, which generated a bit of intrigue and also some ridicule (some traders thought it was “just a marketing ploy” by Citi, according to CNBC). Those analysts came out with a ‘buy’ recommendation, though with a target price of $675, below consensus.
But now in the depths of December, Citi’s Glen Yeung, Walter Pritchard and Jim Suva have cut the rating to ‘neutral’ and the target price to $575. Investors in Hon Hai Precision (aka Apple’s biggest supplier, Foxconn) did not like it one bit:
From the New York Times, a Gretchen Morgenson report into an apparently widespread practice of Wall Street analysts giving private equity clients and hedge funds a heads up into their thinking, via the hedgies’ monthly or quarterly “questionnaires”:
The funds say they ask only for public information, but in at least four cases, documents from Barclays Global Investors, now a unit of BlackRock, state the goal is to receive nonpublic information. Two documents state that the surveys allow for front-running analyst recommendations. Read more
Sighted in the Long Room — one almighty visualisation of UBS analysts: