NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Exxon Mobil (XOM) are gaining, up 1.24% to $87.67 in pre-market trading Monday, after the multinational oil and gas company had its rating raised to "market perform" from "underperform" at BMO Capital Markets this morning.
Analysts at BMO also raised their price target to $95 from $85 on shares of Exxon Mobil.
The firm noted that "although the stock looks expensive versus peers, the defensive nature of the company during what we believe will remain a weak period for most of 2015 leads us to increase the rating."
BMO added that as oil prices continue to decline with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries refusing to defend prices, the firm believes that it may be some time before any supply response moves the market back into balance and brent finds a bottom.
BMO analysts lowered their 2015 oil price forecast by 33% to $67 per barrel.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates EXXON MOBIL CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate EXXON MOBIL CORP (XOM) a BUY. This is driven by some important positives, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its attractive valuation levels, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow."