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New Stock Coverage: Energizer Keeps Going and Going and Going...

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

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Today's $100 bill redesign, an event that last occurred in 1996, seems to always coincide with government shutdowns. And no wonder - with Uncle Sam's current inaction costing us $160 million a day, America must print money ever more prolifically. (Even if the action in Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN), which fell 1.65% yesterday and is assigned a decidedly ho-hum analyst initiation this morning, suggests it is not always about the Benjamins.) Congress, having long ago weighed in on titanic matters like TV volume, now turns its undivided attention to beer. Seriously, guys, don't sweat the small stuff. With Washingtonian gridlock entering its second week, Dow Industrials (INDEXDJX:.DJI) dropped for a tenth time in 13 sessions to fall back below 15,000.

For those who prefer old-school philately to newly minted numismatics, Stamps.com (NASDAQ:STMP) slumped 3.98%. However, the Post Office, showing a degree of entrepreneurship not hitherto associated with it, clearly wants to help shareholders turn that frown upside down. Some equities did buck a bad day. Dunkin' Brands (NASDAQ:DNKN), increasingly eschewing its eponymous donuts in favor of java, gained 1.03% as a new study showed coffee is better than sex. And an analyst upgrade made money talk at Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), specifically in the dulcet tones of a suburban Atlanta housewife who moonlights as Siri.

Economic data remains on hiatus due to the government shutdown, but Alcoa (NYSE:AA), Yum Brands (NYSE:YUM), and Wolverine World Wide (NYSE:WWW) all unofficially usher in third-quarter earnings season when they release results today.

Alimera Sciences (NASDAQ:ALIM): Northland Capital starts the small cap at an Outperform. Its price objective is $5.

Banks: ISI Group covers dual Dow members Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) (Neutral) and JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) (Buy).

Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR): Shares are covered with a Buy opinion and $170 target price with Wunderlich.

Chefs' Warehouse (NASDAQ:CHEF): CHEF is a Buy at Jefferies, whose target is $28.

Consumer Products: Energizer Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:ENR), best known for its indefatigable bunny, is assigned an upbeat Outperform with Wells Fargo. The company's other brands include Banana Boat, Hawaiian Tropic, Playtex, and Wet Ones. Meanwhile Kleenex maker Kimberly-Clark (NYSE: KMB) is a Market Perform.

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) BEN gets begun with a Neutral at ISI Group.

Grocers: Jefferies has Holds on Kroger (NYSE:KR) ($45 objective), Safeway (NYSE:SWY), and The Fresh Market (NASDAQ:TFM) ($54.) It begins Buy-rated research, and a $70 price target, on Whole Foods (NASDAQ:WFM).

Newell Rubbermaid (NYSE:NWL): NWL is a new Outperform with Wells Fargo.

Pharmacy Stocks: CVS Caremark (NYSE:CVS) is covered with a Buy and $71 target at Jefferies. The bank has Holds on Rite Aid (NYSE:RAD) and Walgreen (NYSE:WAG), rolling out respective price objectives of $5.30 and $62.

Premier, Inc. (NASDAQ:PINC): The healthcare information stock gets picked up with a Neutral at ISI Group.

SABMiller (OTCMKTS:SBMRY): Stifel starts the brewing behemoth at a Buy, saying it may make an attractive acquisition target for arch rival Anheuser-Busch (NYSE:BUD).

Sysco (NYSE:SYY): The food service stock - not to be confused with the phonetically similar tech stock Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO); hey, funnier things have happened - is assigned a Hold at Jefferies. Its price objective is $30.

Universal Health (NYSE:UHS): Goldman Sachs assigns a Buy opinion and $87 price objective on UHS.

Zions Bancorporation (NASDAQ:ZION): Shares get set a Neutral at ISI Group.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Procter & Gamble, Avon Products, and Cloud Peak Energy and Stock Downgrades: Jamba, JC Penney, and Alaska Air.)
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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