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Stock Downgrades: Rotten Tomatoes for The Fresh Market


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

Was Pottery Barn owner Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) warning us against acting too soon on Syria when it released results prematurely? After all, it is based in the historically hippie heartland of San Francisco, and yesterday we appeared to push back D-Day for Damascus amid a dawning realization that "You Break It, You Own It." While John Kerry's dogs of war were temporarily muzzled, stun gun maker Taser International (NASDAQ:TASR) - which became the mother of all memes at an 2007 event he attended - fell 5.91% on a ratings reduction. With conflict in the air, the top Dow (INDEXDJX:.DJI) stock was appropriately enough Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ), founded in 1939 at the tail end of Auden's "low, dishonest decade." That dark time was the price we paid for the nonstop holiday from history of the Roaring Twenties. Zale Corporation (NYSE:ZLC), which dates to 1924, is evidently still partying Great Gatsby style after surging 29.80%.

In today's corporate earnings action, Campbell Soup (NYSE:CPB), JA Solar (NASDAQ: JASO), Krispy Kreme Doughnuts (NYSE:KKD), L'Oréal (OTCMKTS:LRLCY), Pall Corp (NYSE:PLL), Pernod Ricard (OTCMKTS:PDRDY), (NYSE:CRM), Signet Jewelers (NYSE:SIG), Splunk (NASDAQ:SPLK), Vivendi (OTCMKTS:VIVHY), and WPP Plc (OTCMKTS:WPPGF) are all due to release results.

ABB Ltd. (NYSE:ABB) The European industrial equipment outfit is trading lower today after being taken to Underweight from Neutral at HSBC Securities.

Assa Abloy (OTCMKTS:ASAZY): HSBC Securities lowers the Swedish supplier of locks and door frames to Neutral from Overweight.

AutoNavi Holdings Ltd (NASDAQ:AMAP): The Beijing-based application software stock is moved down substantially, to Underperform from Outperform, at Macquarie

Elan Corporation (NYSE:ELN): Shares in the drug stock, no longer trading on fundamentals after agreeing to be bought, get downgraded to Hold from Buy at Berenberg. Its amended price objective is $15.20.

Iberdrola (OTCMKTS:IBDRY): Bank of America-Merrill Lynch lowers the Spanish energy company to Neutral from Buy.

Pearson PLC (NYSE:PSO): The Financial Times publisher is showing weakness this morning after getting slashed to Sell from Neutral at Deutsche Bank.

The Fresh Market Inc (NASDAQ:TFM): UBS inflicts a Neutral-from-Buy ratings reduction on the grocery giant, whose stock is currently slumping about 6% after reporting Q2 results.

(See also: New Stock Coverage: Stock Up on Sovran Self Storage and Stock Upgrades: AMC Networks Is No Dead Man Walking)
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