Applied Materials Inc. (AMAT) Shares Active after Upgrade at Zacks Investment Research

Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) shares rose in value Thursday Nov 17 with slower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a upgraded rating.

Meanwhile, stocks opened flat this morning, struggling for direction in early trade ahead of congressional testimony by Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen. Ahead of an appearance before the Joint Economic Committee, Yellen said an interest-rate hike could come “relatively soon,”

The S&P 500 SPX, +0.25% fell less than 0.1% to 2,176.85 while Dow Industrials DJIA, -0.05% fell 9 points to 18,858. The Nasdaq Composite COMP, +0.18% declined 0.1% to 5,291.48.

Analysts at Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) from Hold to Buy today. Zacks Investment Research currently has a rating of Buy on the shares. The one-year price target of $33.50 is higher than the opening price of $30.39, causing a fair amount of other analysts to report on the stock recently. Looking back over the last year, Applied Materials Inc. stock has a high of $31.07. Share prices often trend to the upside on recommendations and new price targets of professional analysts.

Shares of Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) opened at $30.39 on Monday and traded in a range between, $30.00 and $30.40, and last traded at $30.31, a spike of $0.29 or 0.97% compared to the previous closing price.

Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) currently has a market cap of 32,761.79B.

Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) Average Daily Trading Volume

The stock’s average daily volume is 13,476,300 shares out of a total float 1,077,986,000 and some 1,774,488 shares traded hands yesterday, below the norm. Look for trading volume to pick up in the coming days as momentum traders often use upticks in trading volume to pinpoint heavy volume growth or distribution by institutional investors.

However, just a day of heavy buy side trading is not enough to affirm a trend. So market traders will continue to watch for institutional sponsorship as a cue that financial institutions are moving forward.

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

Professional investors such as these have substantial teams of analysts that research thousands of stocks, so it is good confirmation to see them buying a stock you’re considering.

Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) 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 tracking the activity of these professional investors—and the moving averages they influence—it allows for traders to make more impactful choices on trades.

Trades for Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) have ranged from $15.44 – 31.0700, and the stock now has a 50-day MA of $28.98 and 200-day MA of $26.48. Today’s last price is 2.45%% below the 52 week high of $31.07.

Earnings growth is a crucial factor to consider when buying stocks and investors seek companies that have raised their earnings by at least 25% over the past 3 years.

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