Change in Ratings
Applied Materials (AMAT) downgraded at Oppenheimer from Outperform to Perform. $10 price target.
Aeropostale (ARO) downgraded at Barclays from Equal-weight to Underweight. $18 price target. Company's comp sales are at an inflection point, and operating margins are set to decline.
FMC Technologies (FTI) downgraded at JP Morgan to Underweight from Neutral based on currency headwinds. Believe recent strength in U.S. dollar will reverse previously positive trends, pressuring multiples and putting 2009 earnings at risk of downward revisions. Note recent $290 million backlog reduction.GM (GM) downgraded at Deutsche Bank to Sell from Hold. Price target lowered to $0 from $4. 2008 loss estimates lowered. General Motors downgraded at Barclays from Equal-weight to Underweight. $1 price target. Says cash will likely fall below minimum needs in the first quarter without further government assistance. Kohl's (KSS) upgraded to Market-weight from Underweight at Thomas Weisel. Price target maintained at $34. Lifepoint (LPNT) upgraded from Sell to Hold at Citigroup. $25 price target. Valuation call, even though estimates were cut to match the company's new guidance. Las Vegas Sands (LVS) downgraded at Merrill Lynch. Rating lowered to Underperform from Neutral. Price target lowered to $7 from $15. Maintains 2008 EPS estimates. Urban Outfitters (URBN) downgraded at Barclays to Underweight. Estimates also cut, as the company will have to continue markdowns to help move inventory. Wells Fargo (WFC) upgraded from Neutral to Outperform at Credit Suisse with a price target of $38.
Stock Comments/EPS ChangesBrookfield Asset Management (BAM) target cut at Credit Suisse to $25 from $30 based on lower cash flow assumptions following Q3 results. Maintained Outperform rating.
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