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New Stock Coverage: Cosi Set to Make Some Serious Bread?


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

At the start of the Year of the Snake, and in a week whose wicked winter weather took its name from a film featuring sharks and barracudas, Wall Street was understandably in its element. Stocks finished Friday at fresh highs, following on from their best January since 1997.

Back then an ascendant Michael Dell (DELL) famously said "What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders," apropos of an ailing Apple Inc. (AAPL). Fast-forward 16 years and an unloved Dell has just been taken private for $24.4 billion, while Apple is under attack for the unlikely problem of possessing too much cash.

Elsewhere in technology, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) maintained its upward trajectory and has now advanced 18% in 2013 alone, which will no doubt delight its legion of unpaid Chinese interns. And Computer Sciences (CSC) continued flying high, surging some 7% on the week even as it contributed to a billion bucks vanishing into thin air at the Air Force.

No top-tier economic data due today, but quarterly earnings announcements are expected out of American Capital (ACAS), American Financial Group (AFG), Annie's (BNNY), CNA Financial (CNA), Lions Gate Entertainment (LGF), Loews Corp. (L), L'Oréal (PINK:LRLCY), Masco (MAS), Nielsen (NLSN), Owens & Minor (OMI), Radian Group (RDN), and TW Telecom (TWTC).

Così Inc. (NASDAQ:COSI): The upscale sandwich maker, famous for flatbreads baked fresh in its hearth ovens, is begun with a Buy rating and $2 price target at Roth Capital.

HCA Holdings (HCA): Morgan Stanley starts the hospital stock at Overweight.

Partner Communications (PTNR): Shares are a new Neutral at Goldman Sachs.

USA Compression Partners (USAC): The limited partnership is picked up with Overweights at both Barclays and JPMorgan, while Goldman issues an equally bullish Buy.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Nike Has New Spring in Its Step and Stock Downgrades: Elan Losing Its Panache.)
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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