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Stock Downgrades: Analyst Goes Nuclear on Exelon


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

165,000 people is certainly an awesome Kentucky Derby crowd. Whether it is quite so stellar a number for new jobs created in a country where over 11 million remain unemployed amid the lowest labor force participation rate since 1979 is another matter altogether.

Still, the employment report engendered a bout of tulip mania 24 hours before Louisville's Run for the Roses, and by the end of it shares had reached new records. Groucho Marx, who had a thing for horses, of course, certainly enjoyed a better time of it than his cousin Karl, as Dow Industrials (^DJI) reacted to proletariat May Day austerity riots by hitting 15,000 for the first time in its history.

Elsewhere Harvard dropout Bill Gates saw his Microsoft (MSFT) rise 5.4% to again best all blue chips, and Harvard dropout Mark Zuckerberg saw his Facebook (FB) advance an identical 5.4% after announcing earnings. Truth be told, the university's slacker students have had a better time of it than their professors, with its faculty recently enduring one embarrassment after another.

No top-tier data economic due today, but earnings announcements are expected out of Anadarko Petroleum (APC), Apollo Global (APO), EOG Resources (EOG), First Solar (FSLR), Frontier Communications (FTR), Sysco Corporation (SYY), Target (TGT), and Tyson Foods (TSN).

American Capital Agency (AGNC): Shares are now Neutral from Buy at Nomura.

Comerica (CMA): The regional bank gets reduced to Neutral from Buy at BTIG.

Eldorado Gold (EGO): RBC Capital cuts the commodity company to Sector Perform from Outperform.

Exelon (NYSE:EXC): More bad news for the utility, which owns 10 nuclear power plants and 17 reactors. Shares, which fell 1.46% on Friday even amid the market's overall ebullience, are now Neutral from Buy at ISI Group.

HeartWare (HTWR): Shares are now Neutral from Outperform at Credit Suisse.

Kimco Realty (KIM): Goldman Sachs cuts KIM to Neutral from Buy, sending the stock down in today's pre-market trading.

Moody's (MCO): MCO is moved to Outperform from Strong Buy at Raymond James after last week's 13.8% surge.

PACCAR Inc. (PCAR): The truck stock, recently trading at fresh peaks, gets taken to Neutral from Buy at Bank of America-Merrill Lynch.

Spanish Banks: Banco Bilbao (BBVA) and Banco Santander (SAN) are both showing weakness in today's European trading after being slashed to Sell from Neutral at Citigroup. Concerns include softness in Latin American net interest income.

Unum Group (UNM): Deutsche Bank lowers the insurance outfit to Hold from Buy.

Weatherford International (WFT): The oil services outfit is now Neutral from Strong Buy at ISI Group.

(See also: New Stock Coverage: Hanesbrands Stock Run Has L'eggs and Stock Upgrades: No Need for Intel to Have a Chip on Its Shoulder.)
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