Marriott International (MAR) Stock Price Target Moved to $78.00 at Stifel Nicolaus

Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) shares were down in early trading today on lower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock, increasing the price target of stock.

U.S. stocks flipped between small losses and gains early Tuesday morning as investors maintained a cautious stance following a sharp postelection rally.

The S&P 500 index SPX, -0.04% was off by about 1 point, or less than 0.1%, at 2,267, with seven of the 11 main sectors trading lower. The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.13% was off 33 points, or 0.2%, to 19,853.

Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +0.05% traded in record territory, after closing at an all-time high for the second session in a row on Monday.

Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) had its price target raised by equities researchers at Stifel Nicolaus from $67.00 to $78.00. With a rating of Hold on the stock, the company has a 52-week high of $86.15. As a means of comparison, a number of other analysts have issued reports on the stock in recent days, and the company has earned a consensus one-year price target of $83.00, higher than the opening price of $82.09, a difference of 10.10 percent.

Shares of Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) opened at $82.09 yesterday and traded in a range between, $81.66 and $82.31, and last traded at $82.17, which represents a drop of $0.08 over the previous closing price.

Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) now has a market cap of 32.09B.

Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) Average Daily Trading Volume

156,618 shares crossed the trading desk yesterday, 39 percent lower than the norm, out of a total float 340,853,000. lower than normal. Look for trading volume to pick up in the coming days as momentum traders often use swings in trading volume to identify heavy volume accumulation or distribution by institutional investors.

While increased trading for short periods will not mean much will not mean much, however, a trend of heavy trading volume on the buy side over a period of days or weeks sends a positive signal to market traders that institutions may be moving in, so institutional sponsorship is very important.

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

Institutional investors such as these retain teams of analysts that research thousands of stocks, so it is good validation to see them buying a stock you are considering.

Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) 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.

Trades for Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) have ranged from $56.43 – 86.15, and the stock now has a 50-day MA of $81.99 and 200-day MA of $72.71. Today’s last price is 4.62%% under the 52 week high of $86.15.

Earnings growth is an important factor to look at when buying stocks and investors identify companies that have grown their earnings by at least 25% for the past 3 years.

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