Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD) - Get Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV Sponsored ADR Report shares were up 1.3% on Friday to $86.13 after the beer maker was upgraded to neutral from underperform at Bank of America Merrill Lynch as the firm said that the company's story is changing as headwinds don't look so daunting.
Bank of America analyst Fernando Ferreira said concerns remain about company's high debt levels but noted that Ferreira notes that the maker of Budweiser has made an effort to lower its leverage.
The analyst said that the company's reported 1.8% organic volume growth and the fact that its dividends are "safe for now" make the stock attractive.
Beer volumes have been weak, however, and will probably continue to be so, Ferreira said, noting that the company will continue to see competitive pressures from rivals like Heineken as well as craft brewers.
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