Starbucks Stock Hit With Yet Another Downgrade

Jefferies downgraded the equity to “hold”

The shares of Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) are down 1.1% at $96.97 this morning, following a downgrade from Jefferies to “hold” from “buy.” The analyst also cut its U.S. same-store sales growth outlook, noting recession risk to investor spending. 

SBUX is having a rocky December, down 4.1% this month. Should this negative price action continue, the security could log its first monthly drop since August. Plus, the equity is looking to finish the year in the red, last seen with a more than 16% deficit, which would mark the equity’s first annual decline since 2016. 

Earlier in the month, Deutsche Bank called out the $106 mark as a potential plateau point for Starbucks stock, and that prediction is playing out. The equity has seen several attempts to break north of this level in December without success. It looks like the general consensus among the brokerage bunch is SBUX won’t see much more upside at the moment. The 12-month consensus price target of $99.51 is just a 1.5% premium to last night’s close. Meanwhile, just three analysts considered the stock a “strong buy,” coming into today, compared to eight “hold” or worse ratings. 

Puts have surpassed calls in terms of popularity. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) 1.36 puts have been exchanged for every call during the past 10 weeks. This ratio stands higher than 94% of readings from the past year, pointing to an unusually healthy appetite for these bearish bets of late. 

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