Fortinet Inc. (FTNT) stock Holds On after being downgraded at Stephens

Fortinet Inc. (NASDAQ: FTNT) shares fell in early trade today on heavier trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a downgraded rating.

Meanwhile stocks opened fat this morning as investors wait on the minutes from the Federal Reserve’s latest policy meeting, which may confirm expectations for a December rate hike.

The S&P 500 was up 2 points, or 0.1%, to 2,138. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was flat at 18,128. The Nasdaq Composite began the session unchanged at 5,247.

Analysts at Stephens downgraded shares of Fortinet Inc. (NASDAQ: FTNT) from Overweight to Equal Weight in a research note to investors today. With a rating of Equal Weight on the stock, the company has a 52-week high of $44.63. The one-year price target of $40.44 is higher than the opening price of $29.05, resulting a fair amount of other analysts to comment on the stock recently. Downgrades occur when analysts believe that the future prospects for the security have diminished from the initial recommendation, usually caused by an important and crucial change in the company’s operations, future vision or industry.

Fortinet Inc. (NASDAQ: FTNT) shares last traded at $29.86, a drop of $4.23 per share or -0.12 from the previous closing price. Opening at $29.05, they fluctuated from $29.00 and $30.30 throughout the day.

Fortinet Inc. (NASDAQ: FTNT) currently has a market cap of 5.16B.

Fortinet Inc.Trading Volume

7,479,805 shares traded hands yesterday, above the average, out of a total float 147,563,000. Heavy volume accumulation by institutional investors may be on the horizon as the combination of substantial expansions in trading volume and price inflation can be indicative components.

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

Institutional sponsorship simply refers to ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

Institutional investors such as these have teams of analysts that investigate thousands of stocks, so it is good corroboration to see them buying a stock you are researching.

Fortinet Inc. 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 identifying trends, moving averages allow traders to make those trends work in their favor and increase the number of successful trades.

With that in mind, Fortinet Inc. (NASDAQ: FTNT) now has a 50-day MA of $35.98 and 200-day MA of $33.64. It has traded in a 52-week range between $23.16 – 44.63 and today’s last price is 0.33% lower than the 52 week high of $44.63.

Indeed, earnings growth is among the most crucial things to look at in regards to stock investing and, accordingly, investors seek companies that have been successful at growing their earnings at least 25% or more over 3 consecutive years.

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