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New Stock Coverage: Ford Is Off to the Races


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

MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Twenty-four hours after the world's oldest woman celebrated her 116th birthday the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI), another product of 1896, showed greater signs of age. Blue chips dropped again despite another Merger Monday and have now declined at the start of a week for 12 of the past 13 occasions. On the lightest trading day of 2012 some stocks did stand out. Frozen smiles occurred at anti-aging equity Allergan (AGN) as the Botox maker rode an upbeat analyst initiation to end up. Incoming Best Buy (BBY) CEO Hubert Joly similarly lived up to his last name, his mood improved by a 3.24% increase at that recently troubled stock. OJ futures slid 7.1% as Isaac bypassed most of Florida and another OJ who doesn't have much of a future looked on wistfully as his former employer Hertz (HTZ) increased 8.06% on a $2.3 billion acquisition. The US Open began in Flushing Meadows, tennis's best trying everything to get their hands on that Tiffany (TIF) trophy. In tennis of course love means nothing, but the bling king sold plenty of wedding rings as it surged 7.20% to a 14-week peak. Today in economics, analysts expect the Conference Board's consumer sentiment survey for August to tick up slightly at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. In earnings action, Brown Shoe (BWS), Crédit Agricole (CRARY), Dycom Industries (DY) L'Oréal (LRLCY), Movado Group (MOV), and Sanderson Farms (SAFM) are all due to report results.

Assured Guaranty (AGO): Keefe Bruyette covers the company at Market Perform and assigns a price objective of $16.

Autos: Crédit Agricole establishes Ford (F) at Outperform but only assigns rival General Motors (GM) an Underperform.

Canadian Banks: Stifel Nicolaus has Holds on Bank of Montreal (BMO), Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS), Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM), and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD).

Casino Companies: Brean Murray begins Hold rated coverage on Ameristar Casinos (ASCA), Boyd Gaming (BYD), Isle of Capri Casinos (ISLE), and MGM Resorts (MGM). It begins Buys on Full House Resorts (FLL) ($4.50 price objective), Penn National Gaming (PENN) ($48), and Shuffle Master (SHFL) ($19.)

Cypress Semiconductor (CY): CY is stared with a Hold at Feltl.

Del Frisco's Restaurant Group (DFRG): Shares are initiated with an Outperform at Raymond James, whose target price is $15.

Freescale Semiconductor (FSL): UBS has a fresh Neutral, and $11.75 objective, on FSL.

Globus Medical (GMED): The stock is begun with a Buy at Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, among other upbeat analyst initiations this morning.

Laboratory Corp (LH): LH is launched with a Hold at WallachBeth, which says near term macro headwinds over the next six to nine months could create a better entry point.

Lions Gate Entertainment (LGF): The Hunger Games distributor is initiated with an Outperform by Barrington.

Mosaic (MOS): Piper Jaffray picks up the fertilizer firm at a Neutral.

Quest Diagnostics (DGX): WallachBeth has a Hold and $60 objective on the stock.

Sally Beauty (SBH): Shares are initiated with an Overweight at JPMorgan.

(See also: Stock Downgrades: Analyst Comments Are Kryptonite for AK Steel and Stock Upgrades: Portfolio Depressed? Prozac Maker Eli Lilly Offers a Cure.)
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