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New Stock Coverage: You Won't Find a Better Buy Than Best Buy Co., Inc.


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

Wall Street research really can't win. Analysts have long been criticized for excessive optimism, yet last week the marvelously-named Mr. Worth unequivocally said "We have no new thoughts. Sell" and still the market goes up. The S&P 500 Index (^GSPC) thus ended its best first half of a year since 1998. Considering 2013 began with the fiscal cliff crisis, that's not too shabby, even if Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF) - which fell 58% in the past six months - saw no halo effect.

Last week utilities gained 3%, besting all industries, although - in a fitting metaphor for Europe's financial crisis - the City of Light has now gone dark. Speaking of the EU, Croatia today becomes its newest member. Recently, a message in a bottle arrived on its shores from Canada after 28 years. If only the missive it contained advised against both European integration and investing in Ontario's own Research In Motion Ltd (BBRY), which tumbled 27.76% on Friday.

No top-tier corporate earnings announcements today, but the June Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing index is out at 10:00 a.m. Eastern.

21st Century Fox (FOXA): The new spin-off is a fresh Buy at Deutsche Bank.

Acxiom Corporation (ACXM): Shares are a new Outperform at Northland Capital, whose price objective is $30. Its imminent Audience Operating System (AOS) is seen as providing a share-price catalyst.

Best Buy Co., Inc. (BBY): The stock, which surged 130.6% in the first half of the year, is covered at a bullish Outperform by Credit Suisse. The broker hails the big box retailer as its single "best near term idea."

Inland Real Estate Corporation (IRC): Bank of America-Merrill Lynch launches IRC at a Neutral.

New Mountain Finance Corp. (NMFC): Citing the company's compelling 9.5% dividend yield, Oppenheimer assigns an Outperform. Its target price is $15.

News Corp. (NWSA): The media name is a new Outperform with Wells Fargo.

SPX Corporation (SPW): Goldman Sachs starts the stock at a Buy.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Apple Inc. Stops the Rot and Stock Downgrades: Wall Street Research Runs From Research In Motion Ltd.)
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