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New Stock Coverage: Tractor Supply Having Fun on the Farm


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

MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL August, which over the past generation has been the single worst month in equities, appears determined to resist its reputation in 2012. Admittedly, volume was again anemic and another late fade caused concern, yet stocks still rose for a third straight day to stand at a three month high. This after a call for more quantitative easing came from Eric Rosengren, head of the Fed in Boston. Ah Boston, "The home of the bean and the cod, Where the Lowells talk only to Cabots, And the Cabots talk only to God." Beantown Brahmins could certainly afford to after Cabot Oil & Gas (COG), the only S&P 500 (^GSPC) stock to double last year, added another 5.12%.

Elsewhere Greece's ratings outlook was cut to negative as the country inexorably counts down the hours until its imminent August 20 bankruptcy. One only hopes Athenians did so on watches from Fossil (FOSL). The company, founded by hometown heroes Tom Kartsotis and Kosta Kartsotis, surged some 31.49%.

An eerily quiet week in economic data continues, but today's earnings announcements are expected to include Almost Family (AFAM), Carlyle Group (CG), Dean Foods (DF), EchoStar (SATS), Kohl's Corp. (KSS), Liberty Media (LMCA), Macy's (M), Nestlé (NSRGY), Polo Ralph Lauren (RL), and Rio Tinto (RIO).

Arcos Dorados (ARCO): Shares are a new Neutral at Credit Suisse.

Cubist Pharmaceuticals (CBST): Goldman Sachs starts the stock on its Conviction Buy list.

Drug Manufacturers: Brokerage boutique Wallach Beth begins Buys on both DepoMed (DEPO) and The Medicines Co. (MDCO), assigning respective price objectives of $8 and $31. For the former, a strong management team is cited, while the latter is seen as benefiting from its anticoagulant Angiomax.

Harmony Gold Mining (HMY): CIBC World Markets has an Outperform on HMY.

Nanometrics (NANO): NANO is a new Neutral at JPMorgan.

Nordson (NDSN): The stock is assigned an Outperform at Oppenheimer.

Polycom (PLCM): Northland Securities picks up the video conferencing outfit at Market Perform.

Tractor Supply (TSCO): RBC Capital resumes coverage at Outperform.

Vectren (VVC): Shares are begun with a Buy rating, and $36 target price, at Brean Murray.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Prayers Answered at Church & Dwight and Stock Downgrades: Fossil Gets Old in a Hurry.)
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