Shares of the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. were off $1 to $58 Thursday after PaineWebber analyst Gary Gordon downgraded the Stock to attractive from buy.
Mr. Gordon said his "earnings yield spread" valuation model indicates that Freddie Mac won't go up much further.
The EYS is the gap between the earning-to-price ratio of the stock and the 10-year treasury yield. The spread has narrowed to 1.8%, mostly because of an 18% appreciation in Freddie Mac's stock price this year.
Mr. Gordon said his 1994 price target is $67. A 50 basis point decline in the 10-year treasury bond yield would raise that target to $70.
Mr. Gordon said he remains optimistic for both Freddie Mac and the larger Federal National Mortgage Association, whose EYS is 2.8%.
He expects annual earnings growth of 15% or more as the two government-sponsored enterprises securitize a growing share of the nation's home mortgages. Meanwhile, corporate earnings growth could slow from 20% to 10%, making the GSEs more attractive
Fannie Mac was trading at $83.625, off87.5 cents.
Jonathan E. Gray, of Sanford C. Bernstein, & Co. said a price target of $75 for Freddie Mac would be conservative. He believes the company is poised to benefit from the end the refinance boom.
Its fee structure left it more vulnerable to refinancing than Fannie Mac, Mr. Gray said, estimating that its loss due to refinancing would decline from $290 million in 1993 to $50 million in 1994.