NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Halliburton (HAL) shares closed trading up 0.11% to $45.40 on Friday after the oil services company had coverage initiated with an "overweight" rating by analysts at JPMorgan today.
While analysts Sean Meakim and Alexander Merchant initiated coverage on the entire oil services sector with a cautious outlook, the firm believes that large scale service providers like Halliburton still have potential upside.
Halliburton received a $51 price target, which represents a potential 12% upside from the stock's current price.
The firm is especially keen on the company's pending $35 billion merger with Baker Hughes (BHI), a marriage that the firm says will "create a powerhouse North American competitor."
Also helping Halliburton shares are rising oil prices.
Brent crude was up $2.75 to $65.33 per barrel and West Texas crude prices were up $2.50 to $60.18 per barrel in regular trading today.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates HALLIBURTON CO as a Hold with a ratings score of C+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate HALLIBURTON CO (HAL) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed - some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and reasonable valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins."