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Stock Upgrades: Twitter Has No Reason to Be Blue

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

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This morning brings more good news for Twitter (NYSE:TWTR), with a broker boost following Tuesday's 11.38% stock surge. Shares had slumped in tandem with many momentum names of late but jumped after the company agreed to acquire data miner Gnip. Gnip's analytics are hugely important to advertisers. But buyer beware: an ominous 44% percent of Twitter accounts (this author included) are unused.
 
On April 15, a day that's all about taxes, life's other certainty proved much more profitable. Amateur mortician Marissa Mayer, whose Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) had hitherto been dead money in 2014, scored its second broker boost of the week before advancing 8% in extended trading. The Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) was thus able to end up -- even as President Obama told Mr. Putin he is "gravely concerned" about increasing aggression from the Soviets, whose Nikita Khrushchev once told the West, "We will bury you." In response to Russia sending its 45th Airborne Regiment to Slovyansk and Kramatorsk, NATO retaliated by deploying vowels, and Gucci invaded Moscow. (Admittedly, Louis Vuitton (OTCMKTS:LVMUY) was recently repelled from Red Square, but some still hold out hope we can eventually convert our communist comrades to capitalism.) You will recall that Mary Barra has hardly distinguished herself as head of General Motors (NYSE:GM) lately, but yesterday she had the last laugh on the guys. The beleaguered automaker advanced 2.49% even as Pep Boys -- Manny, Moe & Jack (NYSE:PBY) fell an NYSE-worst 14.70%. It was a bad day for the lads all around, truth be told, with Clifford making an utter Asness of himself to a Bloomberg babe.
 
Today in economics, the Fed releases its Beige Book detailing regional financial conditions in a dozen districts at 2:00 p.m. EDT. On the corporate front, expect earnings announcements out of American Express (NYSE:AXP), Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Burberry (OTCMKTS:BURBY), Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), and International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM).
 
Now let's turn to this morning's analyst upgrades, a group that encompasses car and cable companies, as well as our aforementioned Twitter.
 
Apollo Investment (NASDAQ:AINV): JP Morgan moves the equity to Overweight from Neutral.
 
Control4 (NASDAQ:CTRL): Shares get upgraded to Strong Buy from Outperform at Raymond James.
 
Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO): Sterne Agee increases the discount retailer to Neutral from Underperform.
 
Goodrich Petroleum (NYSE:GDP): GDP gets taken to Outperform from In-line at Imperial Capital. Its price objective, previously $13, is boosted all the way to $33.
 
Piedmont Office Realty (NYSE:PDM): The stock is moved to Market Perform from Underperform by BMO Capital.
 
Santander Consumer USA (NYSE:SC): JP Morgan hoists its fellow financial firm to Overweight from Neutral.
 
Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC): TWC is taken to Outperform from Market Perform with Wells Fargo.
 
Twitter: A little bluebird tells me stock in the microblogging service is now Neutral from Underperform at Sterne Agee.
 
United Natural Foods (NASDAQ:UNFI): Jefferies juices its recommendation to Buy from Hold.
 
Volvo (OTCMKTS:VOLVY): The Swedish auto outfit is upgraded to Hold from Sell at Deutsche Bank.
 
Xoom Corp (NASDAQ:XOOM): Shares get boosted to Equal Weight from Underweight at Evercore.
 
Yahoo: Wells Fargo raises its rating to Outperform from Market Perform.
 
Yelp, Inc. (NYSE:YELP): The stock is now Buy from Neutral at Citigroup.
 
Zebra Technologies (NASDAQ:ZBRA): Shares, which tumbled 10.09% on Tuesday after the bar-code scanner company made a $3.45 billion acquisition, are upgraded to Outperform from In-line at Imperial Capital.

Also see:

New Stock Coverage: Use (Don't Lose) Your Head in Regeneron

Stock Downgrades: Searching for Balance, Intel Has a Chip on Each Shoulder
No positions in stocks mentioned.
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