CenturyLink (CTL) Stock Falls on JPMorgan Downgrade

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of CenturyLink (CTL) were lower by 3.5% to $30.77 on heavy trading volume Thursday after JPMorgan downgraded its rating for the telecommunications company.

In a note to investors, JPMorgan downgraded CeturyLink to "neutral" from "overweight," and lowered its price target for the company to $35 from $42. The downgrade comes after CenturyLink's analyst day in which CEO Glenn Post and other executives presented.

"The biggest takeaways from the meeting were the longer term margin guidance of mid-30%, the company taking the potential REIT transaction off the table, and the business continuing to face topline pressure from lower CPE sales and wholesale this year," analyst Philip Cusick wrote.

About 6.1 million shares of CenturyLink were traded by 11:19 a.m. Thursday, above the company's average trading volume of about 4 million shares a day.

TheStreet Ratings team rates CENTURYLINK INC as a Buy with a ratings score of B-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate CENTURYLINK INC (CTL) a BUY. This is driven by several positive factors, 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 expanding profit margins and notable return on equity. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself."

Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:

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