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Stock Downgrades: Scarlett Johansson, Snubbed at Oscars, Sees SodaStream Sink


Wall Street ratings agencies set the tone for today's stock market.

Jennifer Lawrence as contrary indicator? In 2013, the actress fell and stocks rose to records. She repeated the party piece last night, at the end of a week in which S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) shares again climbed to fresh peaks. A new study showed SAT scores are important even in middle age but it definitely didn't pay to be an Einstein (NASDAQ:BAGL). Bill Ackman's SAT scores were an awesome 780 verbal and 750 on the math but he still lost half a billion bucks on J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP), exiting before last week's 29.08% surge. Java giant Green Mountain Coffee (NASDAQ:GMCR) tumbled 10.8% even as Simon and Garfunkel finally found an answer to their age-old riddle. "Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?" He's gone upmarket, that's where. Moving from one Yankee icon to another, Warren Buffett quoted "The Commerce Comet" in telling us to stay away from talking heads on TV. Said he in Berkshire Hathaway's (NYSE:BRK.B) annual letter: "When I hear TV commentators glibly opine on what the market will do next, I am reminded of Mickey Mantle's scathing comment: 'You don't know how easy this game is until you get into that broadcasting booth.'" And where has Omaha's oracle spent the past three hours? Why, on telly of course.

Today in economics, January construction spending and the Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing index for February are each out at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. On the earnings front, McDermott International (NYSE:MDR), Nu Skin Enterprises (NYSE:NUS), and URS Corp (NYSE:URS) all release results.

AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN): Bank of America-Merrill Lynch lowers the pharmaceutical firm to Underperform from Neutral.

Autodesk (NASDAQ:ADSK): Shares are slashed to Sell from Neutral at Citigroup.

Carlsberg (OTCMKTS:CABGY): The Danish brewing behemoth gets downgraded to Hold from Buy by Berenberg.

Cobalt International Energy (NYSE:CIE): RBC Capital reduces its rating to Perform from Outperform amid a diminution of discovery prospects. Its price objective, previously $24, is trimmed by $2.

Embraer (NYSE:ERJ): The business jet maker is now Neutral from Overweight at HSBC Securities.

NewLink Genetics (NASDAQ:NLNK): Robert W. Baird reduces its recommendation to Neutral from Outperform.

Infosys (NYSE:INFY): Saying that the risk:reward ratio is now roughly balanced after an impressive recent run in the stock, Baird cuts the Indian outsourcing and information technology giant to Neutral from Outperform.

SodaStream (NASDAQ:SODA): More woe for ScarJo, inexplicably overlooked for her Her at last night's Oscars. Today the SodaStream mouthpiece sees her stock slashed to Equal Weight from Overweight by Barclays. Its target is also taken lower, to $40 from $55, and shares are sinking some 2.74% as a result.

See also:

New Stock Coverage: Who Needs an Oscar Statue When There's Kinross Gold? (MVPRO article)

Stock Upgrades: Kate Spade an Even Better Bet Than Cate Blanchett (MVPRO article)
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