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Stock Downgrades: TripAdvisor (NASDAQ:TRIP) Sent to Siberia

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

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MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Snack stock Diamond Foods (DMND) dropped 6.47% on what was a difficult day for chips, with semiconductor giant Intel (INTC) incurring an analyst downgrade. Pecan and pistachio processor John B. Sanfilippo (JBSS) slumped 6.25% on a day nuts took center stage.

Apple (AAPL) extended its weekly loss to 5%, having fallen ever since the iPhone 5 officially went on sale. Buy the rumor, sell the news - guys, it ain't rocket science. Mexican cement giant Cemex (CX) took a hit, so to speak, falling 3.52% and a bigger body blow befell the theory that a mob boss is buried in Giants Stadium concrete.

Today in economics, analysts expect an essentially unchanged figure for August pending home sales at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. In earnings action, Accenture (ACN), Discover Financial (DFS), Global Payments (GPN), Hennes & Mauritz (HMRZF), Micron Technology (MU), Nike (NKE), and Research In Motion (RIMM) are all due to report results.

Acuity Brands (AYI): The name is now Neutral from Overweight at Piper Jaffray.

Alcoa (AA): The Dow (^DJI) member is moved to Hold from Buy by Dahlman Rose, which expects aluminum prices to remain range-bound.

Altera (ALTR): Shares are cut to Hold from Buy at Jefferies.

ArcelorMittal (MT): Goldman Sachs slashes the steel stock to Sell from Neutral.

BASF AG (BASFY): The company gets downgraded to Hold from Buy at Gildford Securities, whose price objective is $80.

E.ON AG (EONGY): HSBC Securities cuts the German energy giant to Neutral from Buy.

Hewlett-Packard (HPQ): Yesterday's top Dow stock is lower this morning after getting downgraded to Underperform from Hold at Jefferies.

Homebuilders: Saying investor expectations for new housing units is too high and stock valuations excessive, Susquehanna gives Negative-from-Neutral ratings reductions to DR Horton (DHI), Lennar (LEN), and Toll Brothers (TOL).

IberiaBank (IBKC): Shares are downgraded to Perform from Outperform at Raymond James.

Maxim Integrated (MXIM): MXIM gets moved to Buy from Hold at Jefferies.

Northwest Natural Gas (NWN): NWN is now Hold from Buy at KeyBanc.

7 Days Group (SVN): Yesterday's stellar performer is reduced to Neutral from Buy at Roth Capital.

TripAdvisor (NASDAQ:TRIP): TRIP is taken to Sector Perform from Outperform at RBC Capital.

(See also: Stock Upgrades: Seeds of Hope for Monsanto (NYSE:MON) and New Stock Coverage: Jazz Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:JAZZ) Dancing for Joy.)
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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