CHANGE IN RATINGS
downgraded at Citigroup from Buy to Hold. $52 price target. Valuation call, as the stock is up 29% since the end of March. Company also lacks near-term catalysts.
downgraded at Goldman Sachs to Neutral from Buy based on valuation and uncertainty regarding Clear Lake facility. Shares are up 92% since added to Buy list on November 27. See uncertainty regarding the timing of the restart of company's Clear Lake facility, potentially affecting 2008 earnings. Maintained $45 price target.
downgraded at Jefferies to Hold rating from Buy after recent Sprint news. Price target is raised to $34 form $22 and FY 2008 eps estimates upped to loss of ($4.52) from ($4.75).
downgraded at Bear Stearns to Peer Perform based on valuation. The stock appears fairly valued given its forecast of 5%+ organic growth and earnings growth of 17% in 2007 and 12% in 2008.
downgraded at Citigroup from Buy to Hold. Valuation call, as the stock has rallied in anticipation of the Illinois settlement. $85 price target.
upgraded at Merrill Lynchfrom Sell to Neutral. Valuation call, and 2008 estimates are below the consensus.
downgraded at Bear Stearns from Outperform to Peer Perform. Company cut guidance for the fourth time in nine months, and lacks visibility for the end of the year.
upgraded at Bear Stearnsfrom Peer Perform to Outperform. Company should be able to sustain above-average revenue growth and operating leverage. $250 price target.
downgraded at JP Morgan to Neutral. Stock trades at a premium and is already pricing in strong near-term earnings.
upgraded at Credit Suisse to Outperform from Neutral based on valuation and several other catalysts. Maintained $70 target price.
downgraded at BB&T from Buy to Hold. Rapid food cost inflation is hurting margins, and the stock already trades at a premium to its peers.
Packaging Corp. of America
downgraded at Deutsche Bank to Hold from Buy. Although the company delivered an outstanding second quarter of $0.44 in EPS -- well ahead consensus $0.36 -- the stock has reached an all-time high and supply is rising. $29 target price.
( SPSN) upgraded at Merrill Lynchfrom Neutral to Buy. $15 price target. Pricing in the flash memory market is becoming more rational, and cash flow should bottom out in the first half of 2008.
downgraded at Merrill Lynchfrom Buy to Neutral. Valuation call, as the stock has reached the $70 price target. Also see limited upside potential to near-term results.
upgraded at Bear Stearnsfrom Peer Perform to Outperform. Disk drive market seems to have hit a bottom, given the solid quarterly results. Estimates also raised. $30 price target.
Seagate numbers raised at UBS. Price target jumps to $27 from $23 and FY 2008 eps estimates upped to $2.02 from $1.95. Reiterates Neutral rating.
downgraded at BB&T Capital Markets to Hold from Buy. The risk reward profile for the food distributor group is now less favorable due to rapid food-cost inflation. Maintain fiscal 2007 and 2008 estimates.
United States Steel
downgraded at Credit Suisse to Neutral from Outperform based on valuation. Stock is up by more than 60% over past year. Maintained $110 target price.
STOCK COMMENTS / EPS CHANGES
Bank of New York
numbers raised at UBS. Price target lifts to $52 from $48 and FY 2008 eps estimates upped to $3.15 from $3.00. Reiterates Buy rating.
2007 estimates reduced to $0.30 from $0.40 at Goldman. Fundamentals remain weak following disappointing Q2 earnings and Q3 outlook. See valuation as high relative to recent lack of growth. Maintained $30 price target and Neutral rating.
numbers raised at UBS. Price target lifts to $62 from $58 and FY 2008 eps estimates upped to $3.70 from $3.40. Reiterates Buy rating.
2008 estimates cut at Goldman to $1.30 from $1.53, based on lower assumptions for tax return growth and buyback activity. Despite recent store openings, tax return growth remained below market average, implying market share decline. Shares not rated.
added to Focus List at JP Morgan with a $44 price target. Stock looks inexpensive on 2008 estimates, and has a healthy balance sheet. Also expect more consolidation in the domestic HVAC market.
( MOT) 2007 estimates lowered at Credit Suisse to 21 cents from 27 cents following Q2 results. However, believes company is well-positioned for growth and margin expansion. Maintained Outperform rating.
price target raised at Goldman to $37 from $36 following solid Q4 results. See product cycles just beginning to kick in, with Office 2007 and SharePoint business performance above expectations. 2008 estimates raised to $1.72 from $1.69 and maintained Buy rating.
target raised at Goldman to $65 from $53. Q2 sales and earnings both came in well ahead of estimates, thanks to higher product sales, higher royalty revenues, strong gross margins, and lower expenses. See opportunity as long as supply growth remains constrained. Maintained Buy rating.
numbers raised at UBS. Price target jumps to $133 from $120 and FY 2008 eps estimates upped to $7.70 from $7.20. Reiterates Buy rating.
STRATEGY CALLS / MARKET CALLS
Software industry coverage view upgraded at Goldman: Goldman is upgrading its coverage view on the software industry due to strong Q2 results from industry bellwethers, underperformance of stocks this year, and potentially greater buyback and M&A activity in second half of 2007. Favorite names include
Two Food Retailers downgraded at BB&T:
were both downgraded from Buy to Hold, BB&T Capital said. Food inflation is shrinking margins and same-store sales growth is shrinking.