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Stock Downgrades: Fast Money Runs From Sprint

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

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MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Jeremy Lin is already being airbrushed out of Big Apple history but after Lin Media (TVL) announced the opening of new headquarters in New York, its stock surged 9.80%. Netflix (NFLX) jumped 10.84% to top the S&P 500 (^GSPC) although alas there was no Hollywood ending for Hugh Grant of Monsanto (MON) as its shares slumped 2.18%. Apple Inc. (AAPL) advanced 1.53% amid talk of a new iPad. That product famously trumps food inflation, in the eyes of the Fed, even if the millions currently going hungry on higher food prices would beg to differ.

The great debate was decided by a coin toss, the same method by which Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) decided on its name in 1939. The tech titan's shareholders are certainly flipping out after shares tumbled 12.96%. Merck (MRK) is arguably better off than it was four years ago, edging up 0.68% to its highest level since 2008. And Bill Clinton, whose foreign policy experience as a presidential candidate was once said to have been limited to having breakfasted at the International House of Pancakes, can rest easy. IHOP owner DineEquity (DIN) rose 3.31% to a fresh 52-week peak on upbeat analyst comments.

Today in economics, a decline is expected in August factory orders at 10:00 a.m. Eastern, and minutes to the Federal Open Market Committee's September 12-13 meeting are released at 2:00 p.m. International Speedway (ISCA) is the pick of today's quarterly earnings announcements.

Adtran (ADTN): The stock is now Neutral from Buy at UBS on account of a difficult near-term spending environment. The price target is also cut, to $17 from $28.

Aruba Networks (ARUN): Shares are now Neutral from Buy at Goldman Sachs.

Booz Allen (BAH): The consulting company is cut to Underperform from Market Perform with Wells Fargo, which cites accelerating competitive pressure.

Eldorado Gold (EGO): EGO gets downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at Macquarie.

Evercore Partners (EVR): The stock is downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at JMP Securities due to valuation concerns.

HollyFrontier (HFC): Shares are now Neutral from Buy at UBS.

Lazard (LAZ): Amid valuation issues, JMP Securities lowers LAZ to Market Perform from Outperform.

MetroPCS (PCS): Shares are downgraded to Reduce from Neutral at Nomura, which does not believe its merger with T-Mobile fixes any underlying issues.

NuVasive (NUVA): The stock, slumping 30% in the pre market today, is taken to Underperform from Outperform at RBC Capital.

Polycom (PLCM): PLCM is cut to Neutral from Buy at UBS.

Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S): Shares, falling 4.2% before the bell, are downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at Robert W. Baird to reflect long-term competitive concerns. The price target is $3.

Time Warner (TWX): Argus takes TWX to Hold from Buy due to valuation.

United Parcel Service (UPS): RBC Capital reduces its rating to Sector Perform from Outperform amid slowing economic growth.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Cash in the Attic at eBay and New Stock Coverage: TripAdvisor Going Places.)
No positions in stocks mentioned.
The information on this website solely reflects the analysis of or opinion about the performance of securities and financial markets by the writers whose articles appear on the site. The views expressed by the writers are not necessarily the views of Minyanville Media, Inc. or members of its management. Nothing contained on the website is intended to constitute a recommendation or advice addressed to an individual investor or category of investors to purchase, sell or hold any security, or to take any action with respect to the prospective movement of the securities markets or to solicit the purchase or sale of any security. Any investment decisions must be made by the reader either individually or in consultation with his or her investment professional. Minyanville writers and staff may trade or hold positions in securities that are discussed in articles appearing on the website. Writers of articles are required to disclose whether they have a position in any stock or fund discussed in an article, but are not permitted to disclose the size or direction of the position. Nothing on this website is intended to solicit business of any kind for a writer's business or fund. Minyanville management and staff as well as contributing writers will not respond to emails or other communications requesting investment advice.

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