Yum may be happy to serve activist investors

A KFC restaurant in Shanghai.
Johannes Eisele | AFP | Getty Images

Yum Brands, home of KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, may let activists have it their way.

JPMorgan analyst John Ivankoe is back from the Yum China investor conference in Shanghai and says spinning off the fast food company's China business has "moved from a 'possibility' to a 'probability.'"

That's enough optimism for the firm to upgrade the stock to "overweight" from "neutral" and raise the price target to $108 from $83, for a 16 percent upside from this week's gains of about 3.5 percent.