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Friday's Analysts' Upgrades and Downgrades


Continental Airlines (CAL) downgraded at Goldman to Neutral from Buy based on limited upside, given premium valuation of shares, weak domestic environment, and high oil prices. 2007 estimates cut to $4.30 from $5.35 due to lower growth and pricier fuel. Price target lowered to $34 from $39.

Freddie Mac (FRE) upgraded at Friedman, Billings Ramsey from Market Perform to Outperform. $77 price target. Option-adjusted spreads are widening and higher conforming volumes should also lead to higher earnings growth.

Hansen Natural (HANS) upgraded at Goldman Sachs to Buy from Neutral based on accelerating growth in sales and earnings in the second half of 2007. See new products, expanded geographic reach and strengthened distribution platform benefiting the top line. Also potential for share buyback announcement in next week's Q1 filing. Price target raised to $52 from $46.

Intel (INTC) upgraded at Goldman Sachs to Buy from Neutral, based on increased confidence that rival AMD (AMD) will move to an outsourced manufacturing model in 2008. See new business model allowing company to maintain sustainable product advantage over AMD, as well as less severe effects from capacity driven cyclical downturns. Price target raised to $28 from $22.

Lubrizol (LZ) downgraded at Keybanc to Hold. Not recommending that new positions in the company can be established at the current level. Decrease second quarter '07 estimates due to slight lowering of volume estimate and somewhat higher stock option expenses.

Nationwide Financial (NFS) upgraded at Citigroup to Buy. Growing confidence in management's ability to get operating at a level appropriate with the considerable potential afforded by its strong group retirement and good individual annuity operations. $70 price target.

Pantry (PTRY) upgraded at Jefferies to Buy rating from Hold. Price target jumps to $55 from $48 and 2008 EPS estimates rise to $3.30 from $3.27.

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