Halliburton Co. (HAL) stock down despite upgrade at Zacks Investment Research

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) shares slid back in value in early trade today on 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 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 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 $51.52 is above the opening price of $46.64, causing a number of other analysts to comment on the stock recently. Looking back over the last 52 weeks, Halliburton Co. stock has a high of $47.64. Share prices sometimes get a jump to the upside when analysts upgrade a stock.

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) shares last traded at $46.60, which represents a drop of $0.04 per share or -0.00 compared to the previous closing price. Opening at $46.64, they ranged from $46.25 and $46.64 throughout the day.

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) currently has a market cap of 40.13B.

Halliburton Co.Trading Volume

The stock’s average daily volume is 7,765,120 shares out of a total float 858,794,000 and some 968,749 shares traded hands yesterday, below normal. Investors often use swings in trading volume to identify heavy volume growth or dissemination by institutional investors, so look for trading volume to pick up in the coming days.

While increased trading for one day will not mean much, however, a trend of heavy trading volume on the buy side over a period of days or weeks delivers a positive signal to market traders that institutions may be moving in, so institutional sponsorship is very important.

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

Professional investors such as these have teams of analysts that investigate thousands of stocks. Thus, watching their interests is a good way to ensure you are buying the right stocks.

Halliburton Co. 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 winning trades.

Trades for Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) have ranged from $27.64 – 47.64, and the stock now has a 50-day MA of $43.53 and 200-day MA of $42.37. Today’s last price is 0.02% under the 52 week high of $47.64.

Earnings growth is ann important factor to research when investing in stocks and investors identify companies that have grown their earnings at least 25% or more over 3 consecutive years.

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