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7 Stocks With Upgrades: LM, SU, DO, KCG, HUN, VCI, MRH

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Suncor Energy

The integrated energy company reported last month fourth-quarter earnings of $1.42 billion, or 91 cents a share, up from year-earlier earnings of $1.29 billion, or 82 cents.

"While the company didn't raise its guidance this morning (at least from what we can see), we are raising our 2012 ex-Syncrude oil sands production estimate (once again after doing so last week) to 365 MBbl/d from 357 MBbl/d resulting in us increasing our total company production estimate for the year by almost 1.5% to 586.5 MBOE/d (compares to SU's 2012 total company guidance range of 530-580 MBOE/d)," Canaccord analysts wrote in a Feb. 6 report. "Accordingly, we are raising our 2012 EPS/CFPS estimates by $0.03/$0.06 to $2.92/$6.05, respectively."

Shares of Suncor Energy were upgraded to buy from hold by TheStreet Ratings.

"The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, revenue growth, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures," TheStreet Ratings wrote. "We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself."

Suncor Energy has a forward P/E of 8.82; the average for integrated oil and gas companies is 10.8. For comparison, Imperial Oil (IMO) has a higher forward P/E of 11.3.

Of the 23 analysts who cover the company, 19 rated it a buy and four gave it a hold rating.

TheStreet Ratings gives Suncor Energy a B- grade and a $39.65 price target. The stock closed Friday at $34.29 and has increased 18.94% year to date.

Diamond Offshore Drilling

The offshore oil and gas drilling company reported earlier this month fourth-quarter earnings of $188 million, or $1.36 a share, down from year-ago earnings of $242 million, or $1.74.

"The company's recent announcement of an upgrade to one of its stacked midwater floaters (with the possibility for a second upgrade) should add to earnings power, but the need for a broader fleet recapitalization remains," Deutsche Bank analysts wrote in a Feb. 10 report. "The significant capital requirement associated with this process and the resultant uncertainty over the sustainability of the special dividend policy leads us to a HOLD rating."

Shares of Diamond Offshore Drilling were upgraded to a buy from a hold by TheStreet Ratings.

Diamond Offshore Drilling has a forward P/E of 12.82; the average for oil equipment and services companies is 13.82. For comparison, Helmerich & Payne (HP) has a lower forward P/E of 11.16; Cameron International (CAM) has a forward P/E of 12.85.

Nineteen of the 36 analysts who cover Diamond Offshore Drilling rated it a hold. Eight analysts gave it a buy rating and nine considered it a sell.

TheStreet Ratings gives Diamond Offshore Drilling a B- grade and a $73.91 price target. The stock closed Friday at $64.78 and has risen 17.23% year to date.

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VCI $0.00 0.00%
MRH $42.65 0.00%
DO $20.32 0.00%
HUN $12.75 0.00%
KCG $12.10 0.00%


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