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Stock Upgrades: Skechers Has Fresh Spring in Its Step

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

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MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL On a day alleged bookkeeping hanky panky at Autonomy Software made Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) easily the Dow's (^DJI) poorest performer, the top NYSE stock was Krispy Kreme Doughnuts (KKD), up 23.47% and itself no stranger to cooking the books.

Qihoo 360 Technology (QIHU) jumped 2.11% after reporting a remarkably robust set of numbers. As a Chinese Internet company, at least its financial data is utterly above reproach. And if potato chip producer Diamond Foods (DMND), which dropped another 1.87% to a lifetime low, casts accounting aspersions on anyone, well, that really would be the pot calling the Kettle black.

An analyst upgrade sent Zipcar (ZIP) surging 7.11%, and on the day ZipRealty (ZIPR) rose 7.63%. Bill Clinton, a longstanding member of the "Zipper Club," must be beaming. (No silly, not that kind - the cardiac kind. As such, Bubba doubtless feels the pain at Sunshine Heart (SSH), which ended off 1.5% after being up some 17.8% before the opening bell.)

It's a relatively busy morning in economics ahead of tomorrow's market close. The University of Michigan's final figure for November consumer confidence is out at 9:55 a.m. Eastern, and October leading indicators arrive at 10:00 a.m. Corporate earnings are expected out of China Resources Enterprise (CRHKY), Deere (DE), and Donaldson (DCI).

British Land (BTLCY): Morgan Stanley moves the stock to Overweight from Equal Weight, sending it up in overseas trading this morning.

First Republic Bank (FRC): Jefferies juices its recommendation to Buy from Hold.

Greenlight Capital (GLRE): Shares get upgraded to Buy from Neutral at UBS based amid solid book value per share growth. The price target is also taken up, to $27 from $25.50.

Inergy (NRGY): The name is now Outperform from Neutral at Robert W. Baird, which issues a $21 target price.

Lloyds Banking Group (LYG): Shares of the financial firm are up in London trading today after an Equal Weight from Underweight boost by Morgan Stanley, which highlights lessened risk regarding asset quality.

Lukoil (LUKOY): Credit Suisse upgrades the Russian energy giant to Outperform from Market Perform.

Penn National Gaming (PENN): PENN is now Buy from Neutral at Lazard Capital.

Repsol (REPYY): The Spanish energy outfit gets a Buy-from-Hold hoist at brokerage boutique Kepler.

Skechers USA (NYSE:SKX): Impressed by both valuation and product momentum, Susquehanna takes the footwear firm to Positive from Neutral. The new price objective is $22, a $3 increase.

Webster Financial (WBS): Morgan Stanley moves the stock to Equal-Weight from Overweight.

(See also: New Stock Coverage: Feast on Yum Brands Before Thanksgiving and Stock Downgrades: St. Jude Medical Loses Another Disciple.)
No positions in stocks mentioned.
The information on this website solely reflects the analysis of or opinion about the performance of securities and financial markets by the writers whose articles appear on the site. The views expressed by the writers are not necessarily the views of Minyanville Media, Inc. or members of its management. Nothing contained on the website is intended to constitute a recommendation or advice addressed to an individual investor or category of investors to purchase, sell or hold any security, or to take any action with respect to the prospective movement of the securities markets or to solicit the purchase or sale of any security. Any investment decisions must be made by the reader either individually or in consultation with his or her investment professional. Minyanville writers and staff may trade or hold positions in securities that are discussed in articles appearing on the website. Writers of articles are required to disclose whether they have a position in any stock or fund discussed in an article, but are not permitted to disclose the size or direction of the position. Nothing on this website is intended to solicit business of any kind for a writer's business or fund. Minyanville management and staff as well as contributing writers will not respond to emails or other communications requesting investment advice.

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