“Money Can’t Buy Me Love,” sang four lads from Liverpool. Maybe not, but it sure helps, especially for any prospective purchaser of Manchester United
(MANU), the soccer side from another northwestern English city which is suddenly enamored
on this side of the Atlantic.
Investors continued their infatuation with equities and if, ahead of Valentine’s Day, Love’s Libor’s Lost
(BCS), the British bank won’t give a hoot after it jumped 9.13% to near a two-year high. If any errant husbands have lipstick on their collar, it likely came from an illicit evening at Rick’s Cabaret
(RICK), which surged 6.12%. Although the Avon
(AVP) lady — upgraded this morning after skyrocketing 20.31% yesterday — can’t entirely be ruled out as a culprit.
Today in economics, December business inventories are due out at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. On the corporate front, Avis Budget
(CAR), Cisco Systems
(DE), EOG Resources
(NTAP), Société Générale
(PINK:SCGLY), Whole Foods
(WFM), and Zillow
(Z) are all expected to release results.
(NYSE:AVP): The lipstick and cosmetics company, yesterday’s top stock on both the S&P 500 Index
(^GSPC) and NYSE with a 20.31% increase, is today taken to Neutral from Sell at UBS. The execution and strategy of its new management credited, UBS’ price objective increases to $21 from $13. Brokerage B. Riley Caris also raises its rating, to Buy from Neutral with a higher target of $26. It approvingly notes that 75% of sales are now derived from fast-growing emerging markets.
(CMCSA): Credit Suisse upgrades the cable company, surging some 7.83% before this morning’s opening bell, to Outperform from Neutral. The acquisition of NBC Universal is seen as a catalyst, and the price objective goes to $48 from $40.
(GRPN): GRPN gets a Buy-from-Neutral boost at Sterne Agee, sending it up 6.81% this morning. Its analysts wrote in a note that “we believe the risks are well known and largely priced in.”
(IRWD): Wedbush increases the equity to Neutral from Underperform.
(MOH): Bank of America-Merrill Lynch moves the stock to Buy from Neutral.
Navios Maritime Acquisition
(NNA): Shares are now Outperform from Market Perform with Wells Fargo.
Philip Morris International
(PM): Nomura takes the tobacco titan to Neutral from Reduce. Its price objective is $94.80.
(PL): The life insurance outfit is lifted to Neutral from Underperform by Bank of America-Merrill Lynch.
(UTIW): Jefferies juices its recommendation to Buy from Hold.
(WU): Shares are moved to Underperform from Sell with a $15 target at Crédit Agricole.
(ZMH): Argus hoists the medical device maker to Buy from Hold with a $90 price objective amid higher surgical volumes and benefits arising from its upcoming Persona knee debut.
(See also: New Stock Coverage: Red Ink at Red Lobster Owner Darden Restaurants
and Stock Downgrades: Ketchup King Heinz Can’t Cut the Mustard
No positions in stocks mentioned.
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