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Upgrades & Downgrades: Tiffany's Time to Shine


Maybe the experts know something we don't know.

The Dow rose to a fresh high for the year, stocks snapping a three day slide in emphatic fashion as unexpected strength in October existing-home sales proved positive for equities even amid increasing concerns over negative equity. On this, the 150th anniversary of On the Origin of Species, Origin Agritech (SEED) shares are surging before the bell after more than doubling yesterday; enriched investors may thus be able to bid on the world's most expensive bathroom book at auction today. On an otherwise up day, we witnessed a sky-is-falling session for Tyson Foods (TSN) (-1.45% on poor poultry margins) while it's up to Thanksgiving turkeys to salvage what's left of bankrupt chicken producer Pilgrim's Pride (-1.37% despite posting a profit). And Bill Gross, who recently bought a $23 million bay front home to tear down and build bigger, opined in The New York Times about the importance of fiscal prudence.

In economics, at 8:30AM Eastern third quarter GDP was revised down to 2.8% from the previously reported 3.5%. September S&P/Case-Shiller housing data are due at 9:00AM and a slight slippage in the Conference Board's November consumer confidence index is seen at 10:00AM. Minutes for the FOMC's November 4th meeting are released at 2:00PM. Today's earnings announcements are yet to come from Coldwater Creek (CWTR), J. Crew (JCG), and TiVo (TIVO).


Online Travel: (PCLN) is assumed with a Hold and a $225 price target at Collins Stewart, which sees upside as limited at current levels. The firm is more favorable on Buy rated Expedia (EXPE) ($31 target price). European traction and substantially higher exposure to hotel bookings are not being fully factored in by the market.

Tiffany (TIF): KeyBanc Capital initiates Tiffany at Buy and sets a $50 price objective on easing comps and increases in market share.

Real Estate: Keefe Bruyette picks up multi-family REITS including Associated Estates Realty (AEC), Camden Property Trust (CPT), and Essex Property (ESS) (Market Performs). Underperforms are assigned on Apartment Investment & Management (AIV) and Post Properties (PPS). By contrast, Equity Residential (EQR) ($36.25 target) and Home Properties (HME) ($51.50) get Outperforms due to favorable demographics allied to tight supply.

Auxillium Pharmaceuticals (AUXL): Bank of America/Merrill Lynch begins Auxillium Pharmaceuticals at Buy and establishes an objective of $41.

Quest Diagnostics (DGX): Wells Fargo resumes Quest Diagnostics with a Market Perform.

Coca-Cola: Citigroup starts Coca-Cola Bottling (COKE) (objective of $52) and Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) ($23 target), each at Hold.

Perry Ellis International (PERY): Needham picks up Perry Ellis International at Buy, $17 target, due to its diverse brand portfolio.

Video Games: Wells Fargo initiates Activision Blizzard (ATVI) (Outperform) and Electronic Arts (ERTS) (Market Perform). See also In Video-Game Sector, Now May Be the Time to Score.

SolarWinds (SWI): FBR Capital starts SolarWinds with an Outperform on an installed base that remains underpenetrated.

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK): The pharmaceutical company is at Market Perform by Leerink Swann. See also Obesity and ED: Two Big Markets, One Tiny Company.

BlackRock (BLK): The stock is begun at Outperform by JMP Securities.


National Semiconductor (NSM): Citi is adding National Semiconductor to its Top Picks Live list.

Eastman Chemical (EMN): Deutsche Bank boosts Eastman Chemical to Buy from Hold as the broker believes stronger normalized earnings power is not fully reflected in the consensus view. The target is taken to $70 from $62.

Prudential Financial (PRU): The stock gets an Outperform-from-Market Perform upgrade at Wells Fargo.

Amylin Pharmaceuticals (AMLN): Barclays upgrades Amylin Pharmaceuticals to Overweight from Equal-Weight and takes their target up $6 to $22.

Analog Devices (ADI): The stock is upgraded (Overweight from Neutral) at GC Research.

Cephalon (CEPH): Jefferies upgrades Cephalon to Buy from Hold after yesterday's steep sell off.

Reliance Steel (RS): UBS upgrades Reliance Steel to Buy from Neutral.

Hertz Global (HTZ): The stock gets a 180-degree Buy from Sell upgrade at Argus.


Dell (DELL): The computer maker is downgraded to Market Perform at First Global. See also Why HP is the Anti-Dell.

Union Pacific (UNP): UBS downgrades Union Pacific after its recent Buffett related rally.

Autoliv (ALV): Bank of America/Merrill Lynch lowers Autoliv to Underperform from Neutral while maintaining its $38 target price.

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