Halliburton Co. (HAL) Shares Tick Up after Upgrade at Zacks Investment Research

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) shares rose in value Monday Nov 21 with lower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a upgraded rating.

Meanwhile, stocks were set to open up this morning. The Dow Jones Industrial Average futures YMZ6, +0.20% was 10 points, or less than 0.1%, higher at 18,863, while S&P 500 index futures ESZ6, +0.44% rose 3.95 points, or 0.2%, at 2,184.75. Nasdaq-100 NQZ6, +0.74% added 12.25 points, or 0.2%, to 4,820.75.

Analysts at Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) from Hold to Buy today. Zacks Investment Research currently has a rating of Buy on the shares. The one-year price target of $55.59 is higher than the opening price of $50.04, causing a fair amount of other analysts to report on the stock in recent days. Looking back over the last 52 weeks, Halliburton Co. stock has a high of $50.38. Stock prices sometimes get a bounce to the upside when analysts upgrade a stock.

Shares of Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) opened at $50.04 on Monday trading between $49.71 and $50.38, and last traded at $50.21, an increase of $0.90 or 1.83% compared to the previous closing price.

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) now has a market cap of 43.40B.

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) Average Daily Trading Volume

The stock’s average daily volume is 8,172,420 shares out of a total float 862,178,000 and some 1,060,611 shares crossed the trading desk yesterday, lower than the norm. Trading volume is likely to increase in the next few days as investors often use upticks in trading volume to pinpoint substantial volume growth or dissemination by institutional investors.

While higher trading for short periods will not mean much, however, a trend of heavy trading volume on the buy side over a period of days or weeks sends a positive indicator to market traders that institutions may be moving in, so institutional sponsorship is crucial.

Institutional sponsorship is defined by ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

These professional investors have substantial teams of analysts that investigate thousands of stocks, so it is good corroboration to see them buying a stock you’re researching.

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) Moving Averages

A moving average can also act as support or resistance. In an uptrend a 50-day, 100-day or 200-day moving average may act as a support level, as shown in the figure below.

This is because the average acts like a floor (support), so the price bounces up off of it.

In a downtrend a moving average may act as resistance; like a ceiling, the price hits it and then starts to drop again.

By marking the activity of these professional investors—and the moving averages they affect— traders are able to make make the best trades.

Trades for Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) have ranged from $27.64 – 50.38, and the stock now has a 50-day MA of $47.16 and 200-day MA of $44.16. Today’s last price is 0.34%% under the 52 week high of $50.38.

Indeed, earnings growth is among the most critical things to look at in regards to stock investing and, accordingly, investors identify companies that have increased their earnings by at least 25% for 3 consecutive years.

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