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Stock Downgrades: Stop Hoarding Storage Stocks


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

She loves me, she loves me not? Mr. Market could be forgiven for feeling confused as the Dow (^DJI) celebrated Valentine's Day by dropping for a second straight session even as the S&P 500 Index (^GSPC) advanced for the third time in a row. The ladies can't claim that a good man is hard to find, not with British hedge fund manager Man Group (PINK:MNGPY) gaining 2.40% to advance for an eight straight session in its best streak for a dozen years.

An upgrade and impressive earnings sent Angie's List (ANGI) - featured in Rachel Getting Married - surging 23.79%, while Whole Foods (WFM) - which has hosted wedding receptions in its time - nose-dived 9.70%. Mondelez International (MDLZ), maker of kissably fresh Trident, lost 4.25% and needs mouth-to-mouth resuscitation after CEO Irene Rosenfeld said, "Frankly, I'm disappointed that gum remains challenged."

And one is indeed the loneliest number for The Donald. After a cut-price sale in Atlantic City, Trump Entertainment Resorts now owns only one casino, called The Taj Mahal. A name that will always be the ultimate testament to romantic devotion.

It's a fairly busy Friday ahead of the long weekend, with stock markets closed on Monday for Presidents' Day. This morning in economics, we get the University of Michigan's preliminary consumer confidence figure for February at 9:55 a.m. Eastern. In earnings action, Aegon (AEG), Anglo American (PINK:AAUKY), Campbell Soup (CPB), Commerzbank (PINK:CRZBY), ENI SpA (E), Forum Energy Technology (FET), IPG Photonics (IPGP), Kraft Foods (KRFT), TRW Automotive (TRW), and V.F. Corporation (VFC) are all due to report results.

African Barrick Gold (PINK:ABGLY): HSBC Securities cuts the commodity company to Neutral from Overweight.

Angie's List (ANGN): The stock, a standout performer on Thursday, is this morning moved to Market Perform from Outperform by Barrington Research.

Aqua America (WTR): HSBC Securities lowers its investment opinion to Neutral from Overweight.

Armour Residential REIT (ARR): Deutsche Bank downgrades the stock to Hold from Buy.

Bel Fuse (PINK:BELFB): Shares are now Hold from Buy at Needham, whose price objective is $19. The brokerage is concerned about merger doldrums persisting until an upcoming acquisition closes.

Coinstar (CSTR): Compass Point cuts CSTR to Neutral from Buy.

CubeSmart (CUBE): UBS slashes the stock to Sell from Neutral.

DaVita (DVA): Goldman Sachs gives the stock a Neutral-from-Buy downgrade.

DIRECTV (DTV): DTV is trimmed to Neutral from Buy at ISI Group.

Dr. Reddy's Laboratories (RDY): The Indian generic drug giant gets lowered to Neutral from Buy at Bank of America-Merrill Lynch.

Endeavour International (END): downgraded to Hold from Buy at C.K. Cooper cuts the company to Hold from Buy.

Generac (GNRC): GNRC is now Sell from Neutral at Goldman Sachs.

General Motors (GM): The car company gets cut to Hold from Buy at brokerage firm Craig Hallum, whose concerns limited upside from full-size truck production. The new target is $30, down from $32.

Gold Fields (GFI): Shares are taken to Sector Underperform from Sector Perform at CIBC World Markets.

IntercontinentalExchange (ICE): ICE is now Neutral from Buy at Compass Point.

LogMeIn (LOGM): JPMorgan lowers the name to Neutral from Overweight.

Monster Worldwide (MWW): Troubled by both market share losses and reduced strategic alternatives, SunTrust takes the stock to Neutral from Buy. Its price objective is also lowered, to $6.50 from $9.00.

Oceaneering International (OII): BMO Capital Markets moves the energy outfit to Market Perform from Outperform.

Randgold Resources (GOLD): GOLD gets reduced to Sell from Neutral at Citigroup.

Regional Banks: Comerica (CMA) is cut to Sell from Neutral at Citi, where Huntington Bancshares (HBAN) is now Neutral from Buy.

Storage Stocks: UBS gives Sell-from-Neutral ratings reductions to Extra Space Storage (NYSE:EXR), Public Storage (NYSE:PSA), and Sovran Self Storage (NYSE:SSS).

SunTrust Banks (STN): Jefferies takes STN to Hold from Buy.

Transocean (RIG): The oil services outfit gets slashed to Sell from Hold at Deutsche Bank.

T. Rowe Price (TROW): Susquehanna takes TROW to Neutral from Positive with an amended price objective of $55.

Urban Outfitters (URBN): BMO Capital cuts the retailer to Market Perform from Outperform on account of its under-performing at BMO Anthropologie unit. The target price is $45 and the stock is off ahead of the open.

(See also: New Stock Coverage: GPS Giant Garmin Finds a Friend and Stock Upgrades: Future Looks Bright for Pacific Sunwear.)
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