Carbo Ceramics raised to Buy despite weaker than expected Q1

Carbo Ceramics (CRR -1%) is upgraded to Buy from Neutral with a $163 price target, up from $145, at DA Davidson, after CRR noted improvement in March after weak sales early in Q1 (Q1 results).

The firm believes CRR is positioned as a clear leader in the fast growing ceramic proppant market, and will be one of the largest beneficiaries of the emerging North American oil boom and has the fundamentals - leading technology, infrastructure and capacity - for sustained long-term growth.

Cowen analysts are more non-committal, noting that telegraphed Q1 volume weakness was even more severe than expected, placing greater emphasis on Q2 and Q3 execution to meet consensus estimates.

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