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Stock Upgrades: General Motors on Road to Riches


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

In the tug-of-war between Cisco (CSCO) and Frisco, the latter had the final word. Dow Industrials (^DJI) fell from records despite the best efforts of its networking component, which surged 12.62% to finish at a fresh 52-week peak. This after comments from San Francisco Fed head John Williams seemed to suggest that the end is finally in sight for fiscal stimulus.

Washington was just named the politest place in America. Not DC, where our currently beleaguered president had extra reason to curse the drizzle, but its Rain City namesake. Still, with Amazon (AMZN) ending off 0.92% despite a broker boost, and its Seattle neighbor Nordstrom (JWN) nosediving 3.50% after-hours, its clean-speaking citizens may yet turn the air blue.

And David Beckham called it quits. Five years ago, his salary was compared unfavorably to the price Jamie Dimon - then thought to walk on water - paid to buy Bear Stearns. Half a decade on, history has been considerably kinder to the Spice Boy than the JPMorgan (JPM) CEO.

Today in economics, the University of Michigan's preliminary May consumer sentiment survey and April leading indicators are each expected to improve at 9:55 a.m. Eastern and 10:00 a.m., respectively. In earnings action, look for results from Donaldson Company (DCI), Quality Systems (QSII), and Stage Stores (SSI).

Capella Education (CPLA): The stock is increased to Outperform from Market Perform by William Blair. International (CTRP): Citing an improved business model among other favorable factors, Citigroup takes the stock to Neutral from Sell.

General Motors (NYSE:GM): The auto giant, up 49.88% in the past year having ended yesterday at a fresh high, gets a Buy-from-Underperform upgrade at Crédit Agricole.

Pike Electric (PIKE): Stifel hoists the stock to Buy from Hold.

Ruckus Wireless (RKUS): Goldman Sachs raises RKUS to Buy from Neutral. Its recently-slumping shares are, accordingly, up 4.5% before the bell.

Standard Pacific (SPF): CRT Capital raises its recommendation to Buy from Fair Value.

US Silica (SLCA): Shares are lifted to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC Capital.

(See also: New Stock Coverage: Analyst Has Hang-Ups About AT&T and Stock Downgrades: Pottery Barn Owner Williams-Sonoma Needs to Take a Break.)
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