IBM upgraded as Morgan Stanley sees stock as a ‘defensive play’ amid macro uncertainties


Shares of International Business Machines Corp. IBM, +0.86% rose 0.8% in midday trading Thursday, after Morgan Stanley analyst Erik Woodring turned bullish, saying he believes the information technology company is a “defensive play” amid growing macro risks. Woodring raised his rating to overweight, after being at equal weight since January 2020, and lifted his stock price target to $150 from $147. He said there is a rising risk of a U.S. recession on the horizon, and a recent survey of chief information officers suggested that hardware budgets are about to be cut given the geopolitical uncertainties and rising costs. “IBM is likely to outperform in a scenario of IT hardware budget cuts, with over half of revenue derived from more defensive recurring revenue streams and only 20% of IBM’s revenue directly tied to hardware and related OS revenue,” Woodring wrote in a note to clients. The stock has slipped 4.9% year to date, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.03% has lost 5.0%.

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