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Stock Upgrades: AutoZone on Road to Riches


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

MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL The current cover of Barron's asks increasingly arthritic baby boomers to decide between "Sleep or Sex." Some choice; the prime memory foam mattress play, Tempur-Pedic (TPX), endured a day to forget and slid 6.12%. Its squishy products may produce a baby bust but ahead of today's box office opening of What to Expect When You're Expecting, Wal-Mart (WMT) - whose role as a maternity ward Hollywood commemorated in Where The Heart Is - was the best blue chip with a 4.21% gain. Today may be all about the high tech IPO of a 20-something kid but yesterday's top NYSE stock was amusingly old school and driven by an octogenarian, with Warren Buffett's purchase of 63 newspapers, an ink-stained industry mistakenly believed to be extinct, sending Media General (MEG) up some 33.12%. No top-tier economic data out today, but expect earnings announcements out of Ann Inc (ANN), Brown Shoe (BWS), Donaldson Company (DCI), Foot Locker (FL), Hibbett Sports (HIBB), Kirkland's (KIRK),Progressive Corp. (PGR), and Raven Industries (RAVN).

AutoZone (AZO): AZO is upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Credit Suisse.

ASML Holding (ASML): Nomura takes the tech name to Buy from Neutral.

BHP Billiton (BHP): The miner is moved to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC Capital, which cites an impressive valuation.

Cablevision (CVC): CVC is upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Miller Tabak.

Canadian Pacific (CP): CP is now Buy from Neutral at Citigroup.

Exchange stocks: CME Group (CME) is now Overweight from Equal Weight at Evercore, which takes CBOE Holdings (CBOE) to Equal Weight from Underweight.

ICON plc (ICLR): Shares are lifted to Buy from Neutral at Lazard.

Kansas City Southern (KSU): KSU is upgraded to Market Perform from Underperform at BMO Capital.

Millennial Media (MM): Goldman gives a Buy-from-Neutral upgrade to MM, sending it up before the bell.

Morgan Stanley (MS): MS is moved to Buy from Neutral at UBS.

Peabody Energy (BTU): The coal company gets upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Davenport.

Petrobras (PBR): The Brazilian oil giant gets upgraded to Buy from Hold at Société Générale.

Prestige Brands (PBH): The maker of brands such as Chloraseptic, Efferdent, and Luden's is upgraded to Outperform from Perform at Oppenheimer. (CRM): CRM is upgraded to Buy from Outperform at Crédit Agricole.

Sprint Nextel (S): Shares are now Buy from Neutral at Guggenheim.

Synacor (SYNC): Bank of America-Merrill Lynch lifts the Internet information provider to Neutral from Underperform.

See also: New Stock Coverage: Sun Shines on Hawaiian Holdings and Stock Downgrades: Bank of Ireland Struggles to Stay in Green.
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