AB InBev (NYSE:BUD) saw its stock price rise by more than 3% on Friday, driven by a rare upgrade of the beverage giant. AB InBev has been contending with a slowdown in Bud Light sales amidst a controversial advertising campaign involving transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
BofA Securities analysts upgraded the stock from Neutral to Buy and increased the price target to €65 from €59. It marks the first time in three years that the firm has issued a Buy recommendation for the stock, driven by the analyst’s perception of a margin turning point.
In the analysts’ view, AB InBev’s margins are at a critical juncture. They believe that the pressures on the cost of goods sold (COGS) have started to ease, the over $1 billion profit impact from Bud Light is now incorporated into the base, and the higher cost of doing business that had been weighing on margins in recent years is largely accounted for in the base figures.