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New Stock Coverage: Facebook Makes Enemies, Fair Weather Acquaintances, and Best Friends Forever


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

MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Stocks, though not Stockton, enjoyed a decent day as housing data surprised to the upside. Naked shorts got burned in supermarket giant Whole Foods (WFM), which gained 1.41% to an all-time high, but an Egan Jones cut of Germany's credit rating saw citizens of Europe's strongest economy reduced to stripping for free grocery.

Apollo Group (APOL), named after the god of the sun, surged 10.29% to top the S&P 500 Index (^GSPC), closely followed by News Corp. (NWS), which advanced 8.34%. Its Sun newspaper famously told then-European Commission President Jacques Delors where to go 22 years ago, although it appears he didn't take the hint.

Today in economics, May pending home sales are out at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. On the corporate front, General Mills (GIS), Herman Miller (MLHR), Lennar (LEN), and Monsanto (MON) are all expected to announce earnings.

Accelrys (ACCL): Shares are begun with a Buy at Cantor Fitzgerald, whose price objective is $10.

Facebook (FB): With the end of a 40-day quiet period for banks that were behind the botched initial public offering, the social network gets a slew of new analyst coverage. Controversial lead underwriter Morgan Stanley, coincidentally or not, assigns a bullish Overweight rating with a $38 target. Also overweight are JPMorgan and Piper Jaffray. Outperforms are assigned by Oppenheimer ($41 target), Wells Fargo, and William Blair. Goldman Sachs says Buy, as does RBC Capital. Barclays Capital ($35 target) is Equal Weight, new Neutrals are given by Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, Lazard, and Credit Suisse. Market Perform is the verdict of Raymond James, Pacific Crest says Sector Perform, and Stifel Nicolaus has a Hold. The lone "sell" - sorry, Underperform - comes from BMO Capital.

Intel (INTC): The Dow (^DJI) member is a new Market Perform at Northland Securities, which sets a $30 target price amid valuation issues.

Fluidigm (FLDM): Shares are a fresh Buy at Cantor Fitzgerald.

Media & Entertainment: Sirius XM Radio (SIRI), home to "shock jock" Howard Stern, is picked up with an Overweight at Piper Jaffray, which assigns an identical rating on Cumulus Media (CMLS). Pandora Media (P) is a new Neutral.

New York & Co. (NWY): NWY is a new Hold at Capstone Investments.

SolarWinds (SWI): Shares are resumed with a Neutral at Goldman.

Synergy Resources (SYRG): The small cap is begun with a Buy at C.K. Cooper.

Tech Stocks: Northland has new Outperforms on Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), Broadcom (BRCM), Marvell Technology (MRVL), and NVIDIA (NVDA). A new Perform is given to Texas Instruments (TXN).

Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX): Shares are initiated with a Buy at Maxim Group.

Zynga (ZNGA): Shares are initiated with a Buy at Stifel Nicolaus.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Quantum Jump for Leap Wireless and Stock Downgrades: Nordstrom Sleepless in Seattle.)
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