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 Atmel (UNKNOWN:ATML.DL) gained slightly today after Dougherty initiated coverage on the semiconductor company with a buy rating.
So what: Along with the bullish call, analyst Charlie Anderson planted a price target of $11 on the stock, representing about 15% worth of upside to yesterday's close. So while contrarian traders might be turned off by Atmel's price strength in recent weeks, Anderson's call could reflect a sense on Wall Street that the company's growth prospects still aren't fully baked into the valuation.
Now what: According to Dougherty, Atmel's risk/reward trade-off is particularly attractive at this point. "Atmel has regained its footing after a tough couple of years in its touch business," said Anderson. "We believe ATML's touch business has bottomed and the core MCU franchise seems destined to benefit from the Internet‐of‐Things (IoT) trend toward adding more connectivity to devices." When you couple that upbeat outlook with Atmel's sector-discount forward P/E of 15, it's tough to disagree with Dougherty's bullishness.