Why ExxonMobil stock was a mini-gosher today

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what happened

Energy sector blue chip stocks ExxonMobil (XOM 1.66%) Thursday is what a blue chip is supposed to do — price shocks. The company’s shares added nearly 2% to their value on the day, outpacing a 0.3% drop S&P 500 Index investors were pleased with a price target hike from an analyst at a top bank and news of a looming asset sale.

so what

Before the market opens, JP Morgan Chaseof (JPM -0.10%) Phil Gresh has raised his stake in ExxonMobil. Although the move was small — his new price target is $119 per share, a slight improvement from the previous $117 — Gresh maintained his bullish stance by sticking to his overweight (in other words, buy) recommendation.

Gresh isn’t the only pundit being more positive on ExxonMobil these days. On Monday, Mizuho’s Nitin Kumar upgraded his recommendation on the stock from neutral to buy, raising his price target to $140 per share from the previous $90.

Kumar is particularly encouraged by the energy giant’s ability to raise greenbacks, writing in an analyst note that it is “difficult to create a realistic scenario where the company does not lead in cash generation” over the next few years.

what now

Also on Thursday, ExxonMobil announced that an affiliated business is selling just under 66% of Esso Thailand to that country’s Bangchak Corporation. It did not specify a price for the investment, but said the sale is expected to close in the second half of 2023.

In its press release about the arrangement, the company quoted its president of product solutions, Karen McKee, as saying it ties into its strategy.It concentrates its investments in global production facilities to meet the world’s demand for low-emission fuels and high-performance products, while divesting assets where others see greater value potential.”

JPMorgan Chase is an advertising partner of The Ascent, a Motley Fool company. Eric Volkman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has the post and recommends JPMorgan Chase. Motley Fool has a revealing policy.


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