Bank of America Corp.'s stock rose 0.9% on Thursday, enough to outperform its financial sector peers and the broader stock market, after it was upgraded at Wells Fargo. Both the SPDR Financial ETF and the S&P 500 tacked on 0.5% on Thursday. Analyst Matthew Burnell raised his rating to outperform from market perform, saying the stock's recent underperformance has provided an "attractive entry point" for investors. The stock closed Thursday down 11% over the last month, compared with a 9.5% drop in the financial ETF and a 7.2% decline in the S&P 500. Burnell blamed this underperformance on reduced expectations for materially higher U.S. interest rates through 2016. Burnell wrote in a note to clients that the shares now offer "far more upside potential than downside risk" at current prices. With the stock now trading just above his 2015 estimate for tangible book value at $15.35, he said he believes the downside risk in the stock is about 7%, compared with a potential upside of over 15% in the next six-to-12 months, and possibly 30% over the next two years.
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