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New Stock Coverage: Google's Search Party Just Getting Started


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

When Mila Kunis recently got into stocks, it set off an inevitable flock of market-top jokes, but who'd have thunk that the next Black Swan would come from Cyprus? (Actually, given the island's proclivity for butchering our feathered friends, maybe it shouldn't be so surprising.)

Somerset Maugham's incomparable description of the French Riviera – "a sunny place for shady people" - applies in similar spades to Cyprus, so beloved of money laundering Muscovite oligarchs. Jitters over its proposed bank tax promptly sent the Dow (^DJI) down for a second straight day, although it was far from impossible to make money on Monday.

Indeed unusually, even Apple (AAPL) - up 2.72% in its strongest showing for weeks - and Ackman - whose pet project JC Penney (JCP) surged 6.20% to top the entire S&P 500 (^GSPC) - managed it. Ethanol may be yesterday's news, but Methanex (MEOH) is doing just fine, riding bullish research to rise 4.60% and finish at a fresh 52-week peak.

An equally upbeat analyst assessment sent Da Vinci robot maker Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) 5.68% higher. Its expensive shares, which will now set you back some $485.52 after gaining 4,887% in a decade, aren't exactly free but at least The Da Vinci Code is.

The Federal Open Market Committee starts its two-day policy meeting this morning in Washington, DC. In earnings action, AAR Corp. (AIR), Adobe Systems (ADBE), Cintas (CTAS), DSW Inc. (DSW), Francesca Holdings (FRAN), and William-Sonoma (WSM) are all due to report results.

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals (ACAD): Shares are initiated with a Buy at Jefferies.

Avis Budget (CAR): Morgan Stanley picks the stock up at Underweight.

ING Groep (ING) The Dutch financial services giant, famous for sponsoring the New York City marathon, is assigned an Overweight at JPMorgan.

Internet Stocks: JMP Securities assigns Market Performs on (NASDAQ:AMZN), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), and Expedia (NASDAQ:EXPE). It is more bullish on AOL Inc. (NYSE:AOL), eBay Inc. (NASDAQ:EBAY) - upgraded elsewhere this morning - Web search giant Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), (NASDAQ:PCLN), and Zillow (NASDAQ:Z), assigning fresh Outperforms on all five.

Paper & Packaging: KeyBanc Capital has Holds on Boise (BZ), International Paper (IP), and Rock-Tenn (RKT), which it regards as already appropriately valued at current levels. KapStone Paper and Packaging (KS), begun with a Buy and assigned a price objective of $33, is more highly regarded, in part due to a solid balance sheet and relatively low debt.

Pharmacyclics (PCYC): Shares are set an Equal-Weight at Morgan Stanley.

ProAssurance (PRA): Janney has a new Neutral on PRA.

Realogy Holdings (RLGY): William Blair establishes an Outperform on RLGY.

Sarepta Therapeutics (SPRT): Deutsche Bank begins Buy rated research on the biotech.

Sucampo Pharmaceuticals (SCMP): Shares, up 3.26% on Monday, are begun with a Buy recommendation and $10 target price at Maxim Group, which points to potential promise with its dual drugs AMITIZA (to treat constipation) and Rescula (ophthalmology).

Yahoo (YHOO): Raymond James resumes the Internet outfit at Outperform.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Don Draper Makes for Some Very Glad Men at AMC Networks and Stock Downgrades: Looks Like Investors Are Finally Starting to See Through Lululemon.)
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