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New Stock Coverage: Intel Only Semiconscious


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

In an uncertain world, it's nice to know the cover curse remains as reliable as ever. On the day Barron's said the Dow (^DJI) was on an inexorable upward trajectory, blue chips endured their worst day of the year. (You know things are bad when beleaguered Herbalife (HLF), having tumbled 39.64% over the past 12 months, is among the session's standout stocks to the upside.)

Other equities bucking a bad tape were Cobra Electronics (COBR), up 2.98% just in time for this week's start of the Year of the Snake, and Panasonic (PC), which surged some 12.21%. The consumer electronics giant began life in 1918 as a vendor of lamp sockets; take that, Superdome!

After 500 years, we finally found the man who said, "A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!" Just so long as it wasn't a Clydesdale, what with Anheuser-Busch (BUD) falling 5.00% on a ratings reduction. The brewing behemoth famously featured voodoo in its Super Bowl advertising and yesterday's slide was an uncomfortable case of déjà vu-doo economics, for shares endured a similarly awful end to last week.

Today in economics, a slight slippage is seen in the Institute for Supply Management's January non-manufacturing index at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. In earnings action, Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), BP Plc (BP), Estée Lauder (EL), Kellogg (K), NYSE Euronext, Sirius XM Radio (SIRI), Take-Two Interactive Software (TTWO), Toyota Motor (TM), UBS AG (UBS), Walt Disney (DIS), and Zynga (ZNGA) are all due to report results.

Biotechnology: Lazard launches Buys on both Repros Therapeutics (RPRX) and Vanda Pharmaceuticals (VNDA).

Brookdale Senior Living (BKD): BKD is begun with an Equal Weight at Barclays.

EchoStar (SATS): Stephens starts an Overweight opinion, and $46 price objective, on SATS.

Fast Food: Chuy's (CHUY) is rated an Underperform with Wedbush, which establishes Denny's (DENN) at Outperform.

LinkedIn (LNKD): Shares are assumed with an Overweight at Piper Jaffray, whose price objective is $150.

Lumber Liquidators (LL): Credit Suisse launches Outperform rated coverage on LL.

Personal Services/Specialty Retail: Ulta Salon (ULTA) and Vitamin Shoppe (VSI) are each assigned Outperforms at Credit Suisse.

Preferred Apartment Communities (APTS): Shares are begun with a Buy at Compass Point, which establishes a price objective of $9.75. The firm's multifamily portfolio is poised to benefit continued strength in the macroeconomic environment.

Semiconductor Stocks: Cowen has new Neutrals on Dow (^DJI) member Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), along with KLA-Tencor (NASDAQ:KLAC), Lam Research (NASDAQ:LRCX), SanDisk (NASDAQ:SNDK), and Texas Instruments (NASDAQ:TXN). Its Outperforms include Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) and Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM).

ValueClick (VCLK): The stock is picked up with a Neutral at Piper Jaffray.

Williams-Sonoma (WSM): Credit Suisse covers the Pottery Barn owner at a Neutral at assigns it a $49 target price.

Workday (WDAY): Citigroup has a new Neutral on WDAY.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Miracle on 34th Street for Macy's and Stock Downgrades: Yum Brands Giving Investors Indigestion.)
No positions in stocks mentioned.
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