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Stock Downgrades: Danone Better Beware Greeks Bearing Gifts


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

Despite the best efforts of both a financial firm noted for never sleeping and a biotech famous for its iron-deficiency treatments, stocks endured another somnambulant session amid anemic trading. An utterly unloved Citigroup (NYSE:C), which fell 5.40%, and an analyst-inspired 1.82% advance in Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) each stood in stark contrast to another dreary day for Dow Industrials (INDEXDJX:.DJI). Currency markets were more exciting after President Obama, evidently unaware that Italy adopted the euro a dozen years ago, opined at a press conference about the importance of getting the best value "for every dollar or lira that we're spending." The common currency quickly cratered to three-week lows as a result. On this, the 66th birthday of the incomparable Dianne Wiest, our Commander in Chief would likely reflect that sometimes "don't speak" is indeed the best advice. Mind you, Charles Schwab (NYSE:SCHW) must already regret jettisoning that iconic "Talk to Chuck" ad campaign. Its stock spectacularly failed to make money talk, tumbling some 2.27%.
Today in economics, the University of Michigan's March consumer sentiment survey is expected to tick up slightly from February's pace at 9:55 a.m. Eastern. On the corporate front, BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) and Finish Line (NASDAQ:FINL) each released results earlier this morning.
Blackhawk Network (NASDAQ:HAWK): Shares are now Neutral from Overweight at Piper Jaffray.
Ciena (NYSE:CIEN): Amid iffy earnings, RBC Capital reduces its rating to Perform from Outperform. Its price objective is established at $28.
Citigroup (NYSE:C): Additional woe for the financial firm, downgraded more than once yesterday. Today it is slashed to Hold from Buy at Societe Generale. The target price, previously $58, is now $52.
Danone (OTCMKTS:DANOY): With ever-more covetous glances being cast in the direction of Chobani Greek yogurt, competitor Danone gets downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight by Barclays. Shares are trading lower in Europe today as a result.
Genesis Energy (NYSE:GEL): Citi lowers the limited partnership to Neutral from Buy.
JDS Uniphase (NASDAQ:JDSU): The tech name gets taken to Perform from Outperform with a $15 price objective at RBC Capital, which sees better current value elsewhere in the optical industry.
Nestle (OTCMKTS:NSRGY): Credit Suisse cuts the confectionery king to Neutral from Outperform on account of its excessive valuation.
PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG): Citigroup (Neutral from Buy, target trimmed by $6 to $46) and Deutsche Bank (Hold from Buy) each downgrade the electric utility, sending it tumbling 3.41% as we speak.
Pinnacle West (NYSE:PNW): Shares are lowered to Neutral from Buy by Bank of America-Merrill Lynch.
Remy Cointreau (OTCMKTS:REMYF): Goldman Sachs gives the French cognac firm a Neutral-from-Buy downgrade.
Rose Rock Midstream (NYSE:RRMS): RRMS is reduced to Neutral from Buy at Citigroup.

Also see:

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