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Stock Downgrades: Raspberries for BlackBerry

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

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President Obama this week warned Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has sent warships to Crimea, that he is on the "wrong side of history." Pretty strong words from a guy who still uses a BlackBerry.
- Saturday Night Live, Weekend Update
 
Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) tumbled 2.83%, enduring its worst week since October 2012, as the erstwhile pride of Ontario met its Waterloo. At least another Canadian, Carly Rae Jepsen, is on the money with her "Call Me Maybe." Even Obama and Putin got in on that act, and -- with telecoms up 4.46% this month to easily top all S&P 500 Index (INDEXSP:.INX) industry groups -- it was a smart move. Putin's storm troopers looked pretty silly and Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), which fell 10.8%, also wanted to cover its eyes after spending $2 billion on a pair of goggles. Citigroup (NYSE:C), the ultimate umbrella stock, slumped 5.7% after a tempest of rating reductions. Louis XV of France famously said "Après moi, le déluge" but who would want to be King Digital Entertainment (NYSE:KING) for a day after the Candy Crush Saga company cratered 20%? Analyst darling The New York Times (NYSE:NYT), awash in green ink again, bucked the broader downpour. It got additional kudos for a clever movie review headline: 'Noah': Rain, Heavy at Times. The Biblical epic bested the box office at the weekend, this after Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) learned to its cost that Matthew 20:16 was quite correct in concluding that "So the first shall be last." Its stock, which topped the entire S&P 500 in 2013, tumbled 12% to post the index's single worst performance last week.
 
Today in economics, a slight slippage is seen in the Chicago Purchasing Managers Index at 9:45 a.m. Eastern. On the earnings front, Cal-Maine (NASDAQ:CALM) and UTi Worldwide (NASDAQ:UTIW) each released results earlier this morning.
 
BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY): The beleaguered stock is slipping further before the bell on the back of downgrades by Credit Suisse (Underperform from Neutral, price target trimmed by $1 to $6) and Evercore (Underweight from Equal Weight).
 
CNOOC Ltd (NYSE:CEO): The Chinese energy company is now Neutral from Buy at UBS.
 
MagnaChip Semiconductor (NYSE:MX): UBS slashes the stock to Sell from Neutral. Its price objective, previously $17, gets taken to $12.
 
MannKind (NASDAQ:MNKD): MNKD, which imploded 18% last week, is this morning moved to Underweight from Neutral at Piper Jaffray.
 
Medley Capital (NYSE:MCC): The stock gets downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform with Wells Fargo.
 
RenaissanceRe (NYSE:RNR): Bank of America-Merrill Lynch lowers its investment assessment to Underperform from Neutral.

Also see:

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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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