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New Stock Coverage: Luis Suarez Should Sink His Teeth Into Whole Foods


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

Soccer star and sometimes cannibal Luis Suarez, already irate at being denied his dulce de leche fix, yesterday ensured Italy exited the World Cup saying "fangs for the memories." Yet he should surely have given such antics the cold shoulder and instead downed a nice bottle of Tuscany's finest Chianti while dining at Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFM), whose expensive arugula has been a staple of the Mediterranean diet ever since Roman times. The gourmet grocer is gaining 1.05% this morning after being assigned a bullish buy rating. Adding to the feel-good factor, Whole Foods just put an $800,000 overpricing case with the State of California behind it.
Equities, having earlier touched intra-day highs, did a road to Damascus conversion with all eyes on the skies over Syria. Dow Industrials (INDEXDJX:.DJI) endured their worst day in a month and S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) shares retreated from records as ophthalmologist dictator Bashar Al-Assad sent warplanes to western Iraq. (One only hopes he was long on Ohr Pharmaceutical (NASDAQ:OHRP), which imploded 32.11% amid serious concerns over its eye drops to treat wet aged-related macular degeneration.) Economic data was actually excellent, with May new-home sales surging 18.6% in their best such jump since January 1992. That was the month George H. W. Bush famously puked on the Prime Minister of Japan. Investors yesterday did the same to his successor, with the Nikkei 225 (INDEXNIKKEI:NI225) dropping after Shinzo Abe's 'Third Arrow' of reforms elicited only a yawn. (I don't mean to pick on our 41st president, who somehow lost reelection amid 4.2% growth. Those were the days -- the first-quarter figure announced an hour ago was minus 2.9%.) FedEx (NYSE:FDX), fresh from surging almost 6% last week, reached another all-time peak amid the red ink. It was founded in 1971, way back when Representative Charles Rangel was first elected. Those were also the days. And, as England exited the World Cup along with Italy, at least its BP Plc (NYSE:BP) -- our British World Cup pick -- rose to its best level in more than four years.
Today's quarterly earnings announcements include Apollo Education (NASDAQ:APOL), Barnes & Noble (NYSE:BKS), General Mills (NYSE:GIS), and Monsanto (NYSE:MON).
Now let's turn to this morning's new stock coverage, a list that includes a publishing powerhouse and discount retailer in addition to Whole Foods Market.

Brown Shoe (NYSE:BWS): Buckingham Research begins BWS at a Buy.
Dollar General (NYSE:DG): Morgan Stanley starts the stock at Equal Weight.
Foot Locker (NYSE:FL): The stock is surging 2.22% as we speak after being started with a Buy and $58 price target at Buckingham Research.
Hibbett Sporting (NASDAQ:HIBB): Shares are covered with an Outperform at BMO Capital Markets.
Kroger (NYSE:KR): The company is a fresh Overweight at Morgan Stanley.
Media General (NYSE:MEG): Wedbush rolls out an Outperform rating. Its target price is $24.
Sprouts Farmers Market (NASDAQ:SFM): Morgan Stanley establishes the company at an Overweight.
Time Inc. (NYSE:TIME): The publisher is picked up with a lukewarm Perform and $22 price objective at FBR Capital, which sees per-share earnings in a systemic decline.
Whole Foods: Today's headline analyst initiation is an upbeat Overweight at Morgan Stanley, which sees no signs of the stock slimming down and assigns it a $50 price target.
Also see:
Stock Upgrades: Walgreen Back at the Corner of Healthy and Happy

Stock Downgrades: Harley-Davidson in Hog Hell
No positions in stocks mentioned.
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