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2 Reasons Miner BHP Has 23% Upside: Bernstein Upgrade

Bernstein upgraded commodity miner BHP Billiton (BHP) to Outperform Wednesday, arguing its stock price deviation has strayed too far from from its "intrinsic value."

The Bernstein (AB) analysts think the U.S.-traded shares of the producer of iron ore, copper and other materials have 23% upside to $44.88 per share; BHP shares were up nearly 2% in early trading to $36.54.

Activist investors Elliott Advisors and Tribeca Investments Partners want BHP to sell its oil-and-gas business and agitated for BHP board changes. BHP shares were up 1.3% Wednesday. BHP stock is nearly 3% so far this year, while mining competitors Vale (VALE) is up more than 16% year to date and Rio Tinto (RIO) is up 14%. The SPDR S&P Petals & Mining exchange-traded fund (XME) is down 1.4% this year, while the iShares MSCI Global Metals & Mining Producers ETF (PICK) is up more than 7%.

AB analysts Paul Gait...