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Fair Isaac Shares Plunge On Ratings Downgrade

NEW YORK (AP) ¿ Fair Isaac Corp. shares plunged Monday after a Wedbush Morgan analyst cut his rating on the stock to "Sell" from "Hold."

Shares dropped $2.66, or 14.6 percent, to $15.58 in midday trading. As of the market's close on Friday, shares were up 8.2 percent for the year. And the stock has jumped more than 86 percent from a 12-month low of $9.76 in early March.

Analyst Michael Nemeroff reiterated his $12 price target on the shares, saying he is concerne0d that investors have gotten ahead of themselves, sending up the stock price on expectations for an improvement in the company's credit scoring business. Nemeroff, however, is expecting scoring volumes to be weak again in the second fiscal quarter, which could disappoint investors, he said.

Nemeroff said many investors may be using the recent surge in mortgage refinancing activity as an indication that the consumer credit environment is improving. But rising unemployment and increasing credit card losses are likely a better gauge of the health of the U.S. consumer, Nemeroff said.

The Minneapolis-based business advising company is expected to report fiscal second-quarter results on Wednesday after the market closes. Analysts are expecting a profit of 33 cents per share, according to a poll by Thomson Reuters.

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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