U.S. stocks are eyeing their third straight close in the red today, as Wall Street weighs a batch of disappointing earnings reports. Three stocks also below breakeven, due to bear notes from analysts, are weed concern Aurora Cannabis Inc (NYSE:ACB), online advertising issue Trade Desk Inc (NASDAQ:TTD), and oil titan Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM). Here's a look at how ACB, TTD, and XOM stocks are faring.
BOFA-MERRILL LYNCH PREDICTS CASH BURN FOR ACB
Aurora Cannabis is looking to snap a three-day win streak, down 6% at $6.96 -- and on pace for its worst session since January -- after BofA-Merrill Lynch downgraded the pot stock to "neutral" from "buy," and cut its price target to $8 from $10. The brokerage firm believes the cannabis company could be cash-negative by the first quarter of 2020, should it fail to secure financing.
ACB has been in a channel of lower highs and lows since peaking above $10 in March. However, the stock remains 40% higher year-to-date, and beloved by analysts. Prior to today, five of the seven brokerage firms in coverage called the equity a "buy" or better, while the consensus 12-month price target of $9 hasn't been touched since April, and represents a 29% premium to current levels.
JEFFERIES SAID "HOLD" TRADE DESK, BUT LIFTED PRICE TARGET
Digital ad concern Trade Desk just got downgraded to "hold" from "buy" at Jefferies. The analyst said the valuation multiple at all-time highs may already reflect the bullish case for TTD, pointing out that the shares have quintupled since early 2018. Nevertheless, Jefferies lifted its price target to $250 from $225.
Today, TTD is trading south of this price target, down 2.6% at $238.44. From a longer-term perspective, the security has been stair-stepping higher over the past year, and touched a record high of $257.99 on June 20. Nevertheless, near-term options traders are more put-heavy than usual, as the stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 1.08 is higher than 83% of all other readings from the past year.
OPTIONS BEARS RAMP UP AMID EXXON MOBIL ANALYST DOWNGRADE
Oil name Exxon Mobil is headed for its fourth day in the red, after RBC warned against macro headwinds and the company's chemicals exposure -- "a key reason for weakness in earnings." The analyst downgraded the equity to "sector perform" from "outperform," and slashed its price target to $90 from $100. Dropping oil prices have affected XOM stock today too, which is now down 1.4% at $74.43 -- set for its lowest close in a month.
Options bears have flocked the stock as a result, with 20,000 puts across the tape so far -- two times the average intraday pace. The July 75 put is the most popular by far, followed by the August 75 put, and it looks like one trader may be rolling their bearish position ahead of July options expiration tomorrow.