While Fools should generally take the opinion of Wall Street with a grain of salt, it's not a bad idea to take a look at particularly stock-shaking analyst upgrades and downgrades -- just in case their reasoning behind the call makes sense.
What: Shares of FARO Technologies (NASDAQ:FARO) rallied 6% today after Needham upgraded the 3-D measurement technologist from hold to buy.
So what: Along with the upgrade, analyst James Ricchiuti planted a price target of $50 on the stock, representing about 17% worth of upside to yesterday's close. So while momentum traders might be turned off by FARO's price pullback in recent months, Ricchiuti's call could reflect a sense on Wall Street that the company's growth prospects are becoming too cheap to pass up.
Now what: According to Needham, FARO's risk/reward trade-off is rather attractive at this point. "At a conference this week, mgmt again suggested that mid-teens rev growth is reasonable for 2014," said Ricchiuti. "FARO continues to see stable pricing in the core industrial metrology business, consistent with solid end-market demand. Mgmt also downplayed the impact of the shift in its go-to-market strategy for the new Focus 3D X330 scanner as it builds out a new reseller channel while continuing its own direct sales of the product." When you couple that upbeat outlook with the stock's recent weakness, it's tough to disagree with Needham's bullishness.
Brian Pacampara has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Apple. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.