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Stock Downgrades: Glass Half Empty at SABMiller


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

MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Key Tronic (KTCC), based in Washington, climbed 24.25% to top the Nasdaq (^IXIC) and thus redeem the reputation of the Evergreen State only 24 hours after its Oracle Investment Research rudely downgraded Apple (AAPL). Apple itself yesterday ticked up 1.95% to a new closing best, too busy counting cash to gloat at a 5.35% drop in Dell (DELL), whose head once said of Steve Jobs' company he would "shut it down and give the money back to shareholders."

And Kazakhstan can't catch a break. Not long after its gold medalist was subjected to an erroneous Borat-inspired anthem, copper giant and hometown hero Kazakhmys PLC (KZMYY) lost 3.7% on a difficult day for commodity companies.

This morning in economics, July new home sales are out at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. On the corporate front Autodesk (ADSK), Big Lots (BIG), Fred's Inc (FRED), Hormel Foods (HRL), Mentor Graphics (MENT), Rue21 Inc (RUE), and Shoe Carnival (SCVL) are all due to announce earnings.

Adtran (ADTN): The stock is now Underperform from Neutral at Credit Suisse.

CoreSite Realty (COR): Cantor Fitzgerald cuts COR to Hold from Buy and sets target price at $28.

Hatteras Financial (HTS): Shares are downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Sterne Agee.

Health Care REIT (HCN): UBS cuts the company to Neutral from Buy.

Northrop Grumman (NOC): Citing uncertainty in its key Department of Defense market, RBC Capital reduces its recommendation to Underperform from Sector Perform. Its price objective is $68.

RPC Inc (RES): The oil & gas outfit is slashed to Sell from Hold at Dahlman Rose.

SABMiller (SBMRF): The brewing giant, whose brands include Coors Light and Pilsner Urquell, is lower in Europe this morning after a cut by Nomura to Reduce from Neutral.

Safeway (SWY): Shares get downgraded to Hold from Buy at Jefferies due to weakening fundamentals arising from higher gas prices.

Steel Stocks: Citing valuation concerns and a sense that domestic steel prices are near a cyclical peak, Dahlman Rose downrgades AK Steel (AKS) to Sell from Hold, and gives Hold-from-Buy cuts to ArcelorMittal (MT), Nucor (NUE), Steel Dynamics (STLD), and US Steel (X).

Toll Brothers (TOL): TOL is taken to Neutral from Buy at MKM Partners after recent outperformance.

Ultra Petroleum (UPL): The stock is slumping ahead of the opening bell on a downgrade to Underperform from Neutral at Sterne Agee.

WebMD Health Corp (WBMD): WBMD is downgraded to Underperform from Market Perform at Raymond James.

(See also: New Stock Coverage: Caterpillar Dodges Dog Days of August and Stock Upgrades: Glass Half Full for Heineken.)
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