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New Stock Coverage: Crocs Kicks Into High Gear


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

MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Blue Monday followed Black Friday, with stocks ending down and in a depressed mood after recent stellar showings. Dow Industrials (^DJI) dropped to start a post-Thanksgiving week for the eighth time in the past 11 years as attention turned from turkeys to tranches.

Greece and fiscal cliff concerns dominated the day, but we certainly can't blame Canada after a Canuck was named the first foreigner to head the Bank of England in its 318-year-history and surging hometown hero Research In Motion (RIMM) rode an analyst upgrade to gain another 2.74%. Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), last week's poorest performing blue chip, was yesterday the best, gaining 2.41%. Its $8.8 billion accounting scandal now seems small potatoes compared to the estimated $59.1 billion shopping spree America just embarked on.

Mall rats definitely deserted the sinking ship known as Seanergy Maritime (SHIP), which imploded 18.24% for the Nasdaq's (^IXIC) single worst showing. Warren Buffett, who took to the New York Times in August 2011 to say, "My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress," used the same forum yesterday to similarly ask that his taxes be increased, railing against "sickening" Cayman Islands shenanigans. Perhaps at this point Omaha's Oracle really "should just write a check and shut up," in the typically blunt words of Chris Christie, who spent Monday filing not taxes but relection papers.

This morning in economics, an increase is anticipated in the Conference Board's November consumer sentiment survey at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. In earnings action, results are expected out of ADT Corporation (ADT), Analog Devices (ADI), China Sunergy (CSUN), Guidewire Software (GWRE), Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR), PVH Corp. (PVH), and Ralcorp (RAH), which was bought by ConAgra (CAG) for about $5 billion earlier this morning.

Alkermes (ALKS): Morgan Stanley starts the stock at Equal-Weight.

Allot Communications (ALLT): Shares are initiated with a Buy at Needham, whose price target is $27.50. They say its key category can generate substantial growth even in an environment of tight spending and economic uncertainty.

Amarin (AMRN): Citigroup starts the stock at a Buy.

Angie's List (ANGI): Shares are a new Outperform at Northland Securities, which issues a price objective of $15.

Athletic Apparel: Foot Locker (FL) is begun with a Buy at Goldman Sachs, while Finish Line (FINL) is a new Neutral. The respective price objectives are $39 and $22.

Eastman Chemical (EMN): EMN is a new Buy at KeyBanc Capital.

Hotel Stocks: Crédit Agricole has Buys on both Hyatt (H) ($50 target) and Starwood Hotels (HOT) ($64.) It rated Marriott (MAR) an Underperform and assigns it a price objective of $38.

Jazz Pharmaceuticals (JAZZ): Shares are begun with a Buy at Citi.

Lazard (LAZ): The money manager is launched with an Outperform and $34 objective at Raymond James.

NCR Corp. (NCR): The maker of automated teller machines is picked up with a Positive at Susquehanna.

Oil & Gas: Barclays begins Overweights on Delek Logistics Partners (DKL) and Southcross Energy Partners (SXE).

Restoration Hardware (RH): Robert W. Baird has Outperform rated research, and a $43 target price, on a recent IPO it says is attractively leveraged to the emerging US real estate recovery. Bank of America-Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs, each assigning new Neutrals, are less optimistic.

Russian Commodity Companies: Barclays begins Norilsk Nickel (NILSY) with an Overweight and establishes Mechel Steel (MTL) at Underweight.

Shoe Stocks: Goldman Sachs covers Crocs Inc. (NASDAQ:CROX) at a Buy ($17 target), starts Sell rated research on Steven Madden, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SHOO) ($35), and has new Neutrals on Deckers Outdoor (NASDAQ:SHOO) ($33) and Wolverine World Wide (NYSE:WWW) ($43.)

Trius Therapeutics (TSRX): Leerink Swann launches the stock at Outperform, assigning a $10 target.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Yelp Stock a Screaming Buy? and Stock Downgrades: Time to Disown
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