Autobytel Inc. (ABTL) stock down despite upgrade at Zacks Investment Research

Autobytel Inc. (NASDAQ: ABTL) shares fell back in value Wednesday Jan 4 with lighter trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a upgraded rating.

Meanwhile, U.S. stocks opened higher on Wednesday as banking stocks led the Dow Jones Industrial Average closer to the 20,000 milestone.

The Dow DJIA, +0.18% gained 25 points, or 0.1%, to 19,906. The S&P 500 SPX, +0.36% climbed four points, or 0.2%, to 2,262. The Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +0.50% added 13 points, or 0.3%, to 5,447.

Analysts at Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Autobytel Inc. (NASDAQ: ABTL) from Strong Sell to Hold today. Zacks Investment Research currently has a rating of Hold on the stock. A number of other analysts have commented on the stock recently, and the company has secured a consensus one-year price target of $21.00, higher than the opening price of $13.73, a difference of 15.41 percent. Autobytel Inc. stock has a 52-week high of $21.40. Share prices sometimes get a bounce to the upside when analysts upgrade a stock.

Autobytel Inc. (NASDAQ: ABTL) shares last traded at $13.63, which is a decrease of $0.12 per share or -0.01 compared to the previous closing price. Opening at $13.73, they fluctuated from $13.63 and $13.99 throughout the day.

Autobytel Inc. (NASDAQ: ABTL) currently has a market cap of 149.41M.

Autobytel Inc. (NASDAQ: ABTL) Average Daily Trading Volume

19,550 shares traded hands yesterday, below the norm, out of a total float 9,210,000. lower than normal. Look for trading volume to pick up in the coming days as swing traders often use upticks in trading volume to identify heavy volume accumulation or distribution by institutional investors.

However, a single day of heavy buy side trading is not enough to assert a trend. As such, market traders will continue to watch for institutional sponsorship as a signal that financial institutions are moving forward.

Institutional sponsorship is defined by ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

These professional investors retain teams of analysts researching thousands of stocks, so it is good validation to see them taking a postion in a stock you are considering.

Autobytel Inc. (NASDAQ: ABTL) 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 tracking the activity of these professional investors—and the moving averages they affect—it allows for traders to make more effective decisions on trades.

With that in mind, Autobytel Inc. (NASDAQ: ABTL) now has a 50-day MA of $13.84 and 200-day MA of $15.35. It has traded in a 52-week range between $10.72 – 21.40 and today’s last price is 0.36% lower than the 52 week high of $21.40.

Indeed, earnings growth is among the most important things to look at in regards to stock investing and, accordingly, investors look for companies that have grown their earnings at least 25% or more for the past 3 years.

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