Stock analysts evaluate companies and offer their opinions about future trajectories of a given stock price. They consider historical performance, industry growth, management guidance, and other factors to make projections and ratings. Analysts may issue ratings of “Buy,” “Sell,” or “Hold,” for example. Analyst upgrades or downgrades, such as a change from “Hold” to “Buy,” have the potential to move stocks in either direction. It is also important to understand that some analysts carry more respect and weight than others.