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Stock Upgrades: Atwood Oceanics (NYSE:ATW) Keeps Its Head Above Water

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

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MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Nike (NKE), named after the Greek goddess of victory, is falling 3.13% before the bell but - as Phidippides proved on this very day in 490 BC - it's a marathon, not a sprint, even in $300 sneakers. Wizzard Software (WZE) surged 6.13% on a day a wizard who sent one author from welfare lines to wealth that surpasses the Queen was officially consigned to history. Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (REGN), based in the Headless Horseman heartland of Tarrytown, rose 5.76%.

There was, however, thankfully no need for a horse's head in the bed of Sealy (ZZ), which gained 2.34% after Tempur-Pedic (TPX) made a $229 million acquisition offer it couldn't refuse. Alas an ecstatic afterglow was altogether absent at cigarette stock Altria (MO), which ended lower even in the market's strongest session for two weeks.

Today in economics, this month's Chicago Purchasing Managers' Index is set for 9:45 a.m. Eastern, with the University of Michigan's final figure for September consumer sentiment arriving at 9:55 a.m. On the corporate front, American Greetings (AM), Finish Line (FINL), and Walgreen (WAG) are all due to release quarterly results.

Air France-KLM (AFLYY): Shares are upgraded to Buy from Neutral at UBS.

Atwood Oceanics (NYSE:ATW) The stock is now Buy from Neutral at Guggenheim.

Linde Group (LNEGY): The name is now Overweight from Neutral at HSBC Securities.

Publicis (PUBGY): The giant French advertising firm is upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Macquarie.

Syngenta (SYT): Shares are higher ahead of the open on an upgrade to Overweight from Neutral at HSBC Securities.

Wolseley (WOSYY): The firm is boosted to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank.

(See also: Stock Downgrades: Happy Meal on Hold at McDonald's (NYSE:MC) and New Stock Coverage: Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) Looks Like a Riser.)
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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