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Stock Downgrades: GE All Out of Juice?


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

MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL The US dollar rose to a two-year high against the euro but it wasn't the world's hottest currency. No, that honor belonged to our northern cousins in Canada, whose new bills will quite literally melt in the heat.

Best, then, for proud Canadian Justin Bieber not to put his money where his mouth is. Especially after Align Technology (ALGN), whose braces he uses, slid 7.4%. Dean Foods (DF) certainly didn't do anything for the youngster's milk teeth. The dairy powerhouse plunged 13% in a week which saw it downgraded by Goldman Sachs (GS). Cry not, as employees of the investment bank will still continue to enjoy expensive items from the fancy Momofuku Milk Bar.

Earnings season kicks into high gear this week with over 200 companies due to report Q2 results. Today's releases are expected to include Charles Schwab (SCHW), Citigroup (C), and Gannett (GCI).

General Electric (GE): The key Dow component is moved to Equal-Weight from Overweight at Morgan Stanley.

Aixtron (AIXG): Shares are cut to Hold from Buy at ThinkEquity.

Alpha Natural Resources (ANF): The coal company gets downgraded to Underperform from Outperform by BMO Capital.

Alumina (AWC): Shares are slashed to Sell from Neutral at Citigroup.

Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD): The brewing giant is moved to Market Perform from Outperform by Sanford Bernstein.

Dean Foods (DF): The dairy giant is downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at BMO Capital.

Exxon Mobil (XOM): The oil giant, a Dow member, is cut to Hold from Buy with a $94 price target at Deutsche Bank, which expresses issues over its current valuation.

Mead Johnson Nutrition (MJN): RBC Capital moves the company to Sector Perform from Outperform.

Panera Bread (PNRA): Shares are downgraded to Underweight from Overweight at Piper Jaffray.

SanDisk (SNDK): The stock is taken to Neutral from Buy with a new lower $32 objective at Robert W. Baird, which cites continued weakness in flash memory trends and an ongoing product mix shift.

Select Medical (SEM): Bank of America-Merrill Lynch lowers the stock Neutral from Buy.

Sonic Corp. (SONC): The quick service restaurant operator is reduced to Neutral from Overweight at Piper Jaffray.

Swatch Group (SWGAY): Shares of the Swiss watch giant are trading lower in Europe this morning on the back of a Neutral-from-Buy downgrade at Citigroup.

Texas Instruments (TXN): TXN is taken to Underperform from Perform with a $24.50 target at FBR Capital, which is concerned about risks to quarterly revenue guidance.

Tim Hortons (THI): THI is taken to Sell from Neutral at Goldman.

Total SA (TOT): The oil stock is falling in France today following a cut by Société Générale to Hold from Buy.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Check Into Starwood Hotels and New Stock Coverage: Phillips 66 on Route to Riches.)
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