Two of Nashville's publicly traded hospital chains got thumbs up from analysts Tuesday. Ralph Giacobbe at Credit Suisse said Community Health Systems' cost controls will serve it well in the coming quarter and hiked his price target to $55. Over at Deutsche, Darren Lehrich lifted his price target to $51 from $48. CHS shares (Ticker: CYH) closed Tuesday trading up about 1 percent at $45.57 after the company reported its Q1 numbers late Monday.
LifePoint Hospitals also got a little more love in the wake of its profit report late last week. Joe France at Cantor Fitzgerald hiked his price target to $45 from $40, but maintained his 'hold' rating. LifePoint's stock (Ticker: LPNT) ended Tuesday at $48 on the nose.
Analysts at UBS Securities on Thursday reiterated their 'buy' rating on shares of Tractor Supply and hiked their price target to $125 from $117. That puts them at the top of the heap when it comes to targets and leaves about 13 percent of upside from where Tractor Supply (Ticker: TSCO) closed the day. Also raising his target is Adam Sindler at Deutsche Bank, who made a great call back in December when he told investors to pile back into Brentwood-based Tractor Supply. Sindler now has the stock climbing to $112, $5 higher than his previous target.
SEE ALSO: Tractor Supply Q1 EPS up 13%
Analyst Paul Sankey at Deutsche Bank has slashed his price target for shares of Delek US Holdings and several other refining stocks, saying the industry's fundamentals are no longer as positive. Sankey now sees Delek — which has run from $15 to $34 in the past year — climbing to $38 instead of $48. In his note, he said counting on exports to pick up the slack from weaker demand is a risky move.
Analyst Darren Lehrich at Deutsche Bank says investors should stop being universally bullish on the hospital sector after the big run-up of the past few months. He has lowered his rating on Community Health Systems (as well as Health Management Associates and Tenet Healthcare) but has kept 'buy' ratings on fellow locals HCA Holdings and Vanguard Health Systems.
"While we maintain a generally constructive view on the potential for higher EBITDA/EPS growth in 2014-2015 due to coverage expansion from PPACA, we believe the PPACA theme is largely discounted into the group's valuation at current levels (~6.5x EV/EBITDA)."
Shares of CHS (Ticker: CYH) are off more than 4 percent to about $42 in mid-morning trading Wednesday. Lehrich's CHS target is now $48.
Analyst Scott Fidel at Deutsche Bank has lifted his price target for shares of wellness services provider Healthways to $10 from $9. Healthways (Ticker: HWAY) has traded above $11 for most of the past two months and hasn't been in single digits since Thanksgiving. Fidel rates the stock a 'hold.'
Shares of Vanguard Health Systems are up more than 3 percent in Wednesday trading after Deutsche Bank analyst Darren Lehrich said the company is "among the most forward-thinking" when it comes to doing business in the health care reform era. Vanguard's plans to expand its insurance options — we've written about them on several occasions — are promising, said Lehrich, who upgraded Vanguard (Ticker: VHS) to 'buy' from 'hold' and raised his price target to $17 from $14.
Analyst Stephen Atkinson at BMO Capital Markets on Wednesday added to the optimism surrounding shares of Louisiana-Pacific. Prediciting a 20 percent jump in 2013 sales, Atkinson hiked his price target for LP shares (Ticker: LPX) to $24 from $18, leaving about 15 percent of upside from their current levels. Like others have said recently, Atkinson expects prices for oriented strand board to drop this year and next, but they'll still be high enough to power some serious profit growth.
John Perry at Deutsche Bank also has hiked his price target for Healthcare Realty Trust, but the REIT's outlook is nowhere near as bright as for LP. Perry's $24 target — up from $20 — is $1 below where Healthcare Realty (Ticker: HR) closed Wednesday's session, and he rates the stock — along with most of the other REITs he covers — a 'hold.'
Adam Sindler on Monday said Tractor Supply's drop from $90 and churn around $85 is an opportunity for investors to jump (back) in and added the Brentwood-based farm and ranch retailer to Deutsche Bank's short-term 'buy' list. The news sent Tractor Supply (Ticker: TSCO) up 2.5 percent Monday to their highest level in two weeks. Year to date, they're up 24 percent.
Analysts at WallachBeth Capital have hiked their rating on shares of LifePoint Hospitals to 'buy' from 'hold' and tweaked their price target to $42 from $41. Even though the latter doesn't sound like much of a change, investors liked the news and bid up LifePoint (Ticker: LPNT) about 2 percent Monday to almost $37. They're now flat on the year.
Shares of Brookdale Senior Living (Ticker: BKD) got dinged Thursday after Deutsche Bank analysts tweaked their price target for the nursing home operator to $32 from $33. That helped take down Brookdale about 3 percent on the day to $24.51, but it's still up more than 40 percent this year — mainly on the back of M&A chatter.
Analysts at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey have begun covering shares of Healthcare Realty Trust with a 'neutral' rating. That gives them plenty of company: Of the 13 other firms following West End-based Healthcare Realty, only RBC (via locally based Frank Morgan) and BMO Capital Markets have 'buy' ratings and only Cowen & Co. is telling investors to sell the company. Shares of Healthcare Realty (Ticker: HR) are up 26 percent this year.