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Stock Upgrades: Fast Money Says 'Run, Forest (Labs), Run!'

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

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In the wise words of Damon Runyon, "The race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, but that's the way to bet." Or should he have said Swift? A day after his a-little-bit-country daughter Taylor took home four American Music Awards, Scott Swift, a financial adviser at Bank of America-Merrill Lynch (NYSE:BAC), made some fast money in Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT), which jumped 1.83% after his employer increased its investment assessment on the pride of Peoria. That bested all blue chips and took the Dow (INDEXDJX:.DJI) to another historic high. They say that when you play a Nashville number in reverse you get your life back, your wife back, and your dog back. Not sure about the canine bit, but Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) did yesterday touch 4,000 for the first time since September 2000, the month Cats closed on Broadway. That autumn, Dubya accused Al of "fuzzy math," and iffy arithmetic is evidently alive and well 13 years on. This after William Ackman, referring to 77-year-old Carl Icahn and 79-year-old Bill Stiritz, said Herbalife (NYSE:HLF) is being kept afloat by a bunch of "80-year-old billionaires." Mr. Ackman, at last count, lost about $450 million on JC Penney (NYSE:JCP), which just jumped 3.61% despite being booted from the S&P 500 Index (INDEXSP:.INX). Meanwhile an upgrade gained Alcoa (NYSE:AA) 3.79% and a surging bank of Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) - recently booted from the Dow along with the commodity company -- added on another 1.09%. Karl Marx may have been a commie, but he was clearly right on the money in declaring, "I don't care to belong to any club that will have me as a member." Still, even as US stock markets reach fresh records, many smart observers doubt this rally is for real. Especially after Yelp Inc (NASDAQ:YELP) slid 6.72% and a disowned Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) tumbled 4.73%.

In terms of economic events that may move US markets this morning, at 10:00 a.m. Eastern an uptick is expected in the Conference Board's November consumer confidence index. Regarding specific stocks, American Woodmark (NASDAQ:AMWD), Barnes & Noble (NYSE:BKS), Children's Place (NASDAQ:PLCE), Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ), Hormel Foods (NYSE:HRL), Tiffany (NYSE:TIF), and TiVo Inc. (NASDAQ:TIVO) are all due to release results.

ASML Holding (NASDAQ:ASML): Société Générale boosts the tech firm to Buy from Hold.

Autoliv (NYSE:ALV): Shares are now Neutral from Sell at Citigroup.

Danaher (NYSE:DHR): Goldman Sachs gives the stock a Buy-from-Neutral upgrade.

FireEye (NASDAQ:FEYE): FireEye gets increased to Overweight from Equal Weight by Barclays. FireEye provides network security.

Forest Laboratories (NYSE:FRX): (Hat tip to Mr. Gump for today's title.) Forest Laboratories is now Neutral from Underweight at Piper Jaffray. Forest Laboratories is involved in hypertension and fibromyalgia, among other therapeutic areas.

Huntsman (NYSE:HUN): Shares are now Buy from Neutral at Goldman.

Kinross Gold (NYSE:KCG): The stock gets upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight with Morgan Stanley.

Peabody Energy (NYSE:BTU): Macquarie moves the coal company to Outperform from Neutral.

Summit Hotel (NYSE:INN): Summit Hotel is hoisted to Outperform from Perform by BMO Capital. Stock in Summit Hotel has fallen 1.03% since November 2012.

Workday (NYSE:WDAY): Robert W. Baird raises its recommendation to Outperform from Neutral.

(See also: New Stock Coverage: Tuesday Morning a Fine Time to Buy Tuesday Morning and Stock Downgrades: Dark Day for Luxottica, Which Let Chilean Miners See the Light)
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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