CHANGE IN RATINGS

Arthur J. Gallagher

(AJG) - Get Report

upgraded at Bear Stearns from Underperform to Peer Perform. Stock has an attractive 4.8% dividend yield, supported by solid free cash flow. AJG has also underperformed its peers since August.

Akamai

(AKAM) - Get Report

upgraded at Weisel from Market-weight to Overweight. Recent sell-off creates an attractive valuation. $42 price target.

Akamai target price cut at Credit Suisse to $39 from $45. Maintained Neutral rating given near-term pricing environment and lack of significant revenue upside.

BlackRock

(BLK) - Get Report

upgraded at Goldman Sachs to Buy from Neutral based on continuing earnings strength and widening P/E gap vs. peers. Believe company is best positioned asset manager given leverage to globalization and continuing shift toward non-traditional (alternative) mandates. Price target raised to $240 from $210.

Cincinnati Financial

(CINF) - Get Report

downgraded at Keybanc from Buy to Hold. Fundamentals in the company's core markets are deteriorating faster than expected.

FormFactor

(FORM) - Get Report

downgraded at FBR to an Underperform rating following disappointing Q3 results and guidance. Target price is now $35.

Kendle International

(KNDL)

downgraded at UBS to Neutral rating from Buy. Price target dips to $47 from $50 and FY08 EPS estimates drop to $2.25 from $2.43.

Eli Lilly

(LLY) - Get Report

downgraded at Oppenheimer from Buy to Neutral. Decision to suspend early stage trials for Prasurgel raises the overall risk profile of the pipeline.

Eli Lilly downgraded at Morgan Stanley from equalweight to underweight and lowers price target from $61 to $51.

Eli Lilly price target trimmed at Goldman to $61 from $65 after company announced that two small studies have been suspended, suggesting a smaller market opportunity and delay. See potential weakness if product fails in TRITON trial, and increased risk around prasugrel. Maintained Buy rating.

Masco

(MAS) - Get Report

downgraded at Morgan Stanley from equalweight to underweight.

Moody's

(MCO) - Get Report

2007 estimates cut at FBR by 15 cents to $2.40 a share following disappointing Q3 report and future outlook. Maintained Outperform rating.

Moody's downgraded at JP Morgan from Neutral to Underweight. Certain areas of structured finance are not likely to recover in the near term. Estimates also cut.

Meredith

(MDP) - Get Report

upgraded at JP Morgan from Neutral to Overweight. WMT licensing deal could add another 14% to market value. Solid near-term execution also driving core earnings growth.

Merrill Lynch

(MER)

downgraded at UBS to Neutral rating from Buy. Price target dips to $70 from $86 and FY08 EPS estimates drop to $7.00 from $7.85.

Merrill Lynch downgraded at Wachovia to Market Perform. Expect senior management turnover and compensation pressures to continue to weigh on the stock. Estimates also lowered.

Merrill Lynch downgraded at Bernstein to Market Perform. $78 price target. Company is lacking sufficient risk management. Estimates also lowered, to reflect continued CDO and sub-prime mortgage exposure.

Merrill Lynch 2007 estimates slashed at Goldman to $1.24 from $6.00. Note surprise that Merrill had $32 billion in CDO exposure in Q2, and believe additional write-downs will be necessary given remaining exposure. Price target cut to $79 from $92. Maintained Neutral rating.

Motorola

(MOT)

upgraded at Oppenheimer from Neutral to Buy. $23 price target. Stock is attractive on a free cash flow and EV/Sales basis. Improvements in the mobile device portfolio should also help drive 2008 results.

National Oilwell Varco

(NOV) - Get Report

downgraded at Credit Suisse to Neutral from Outperform based on valuation. Cites stock is up 140% in the last year compared to 53% for the OSX. Raised target price to $85 from $69.50.

Palm

(PALM)

downgraded at Bear Stearns from Peer Perform to Underperform. Valuation call, as the fair value of the stock following the distribution will likely be $5 to $6.

Pacific Sunwear

(PSUN)

upgraded at Citigroup from Hold to Buy. $19 price target. Sale of the underperforming demo division along with improving product execution at core stores could drive accelerating earnings growth.

Praxair

(PX)

downgraded at Merrill Lynch to Neutral. Valuation call, as the stock trades at a record 45% premium to the market multiple.

Spirit Aerosystems

(SPR) - Get Report

coverage initiated at Deutsche Bank with a Hold rating and a $36 target price. 787 program delays have created uncertainty.

Symantec

(SYMC) - Get Report

downgraded at Baird from Outperform to Neutral. $22 price target. Company's December quarter guidance was disappointing, and there's further downside potential to 2008 numbers.

Talbots

(TLB)

upgraded at Citigroup from Sell to Hold. Stock is down 40% for the year, and is discounting the company's cautious outlook. $16 price target.

UAL

(UAUA)

downgraded at JP Morgan to Neutral. Stock has outperformed its peers, but AMR and DAL are better capitalized if competition heats up.

STOCK COMMENTS / EPS CHANGES

AmeriCredit

(ACF)

numbers lowered at Jefferies. Price target dips to $18 from $19 and FY 2008 EPS estimates slashed to $2.32 from $2.62. Reiterates Hold rating.

AmeriCredit target price cut at Credit Suisse to $22 from $28 after Q1 results were significantly below estimates. Maintained Neutral rating.

Affymetrix

(AFFX)

numbers raised at UBS. Price target lifts to $29 from $27 and FY07 EPS estimates upped to $0.28 from $0.27. Reiterates Neutral rating.

Allegheny Tech

(ATI) - Get Report

numbers lowered at Jefferies. Price target drops to $93 from $100 and FY 2008 EPS estimates slashed to $7.75 from $8.75. Reiterates Hold rating.

Activision

(ATVI) - Get Report

2008 estimates raised at Goldman to $0.70 from $0.55. Increased confidence that company will post strong Q2 results based on International Transformers sales and continued strength in Guitar Hero. Note solid product momentum and history of outpacing conservative targets. Price target raised to $26 from $24 and maintained Buy rating.

General Dynamics

(GD) - Get Report

numbers raised at Jefferies. Price target lifts to $102 from $97 and FY 2008 EPS estimates upped to $5.80 from $5.70. Reiterates Buy rating.

Northrop Grumman

(NOC) - Get Report

numbers raised at Jefferies. Price target lifts to $87 from $75 and FY 2008 EPS estimates upped to $5.85 from $5.50. Reiterates Buy rating.

VMWare

(VMW) - Get Report

numbers raised at UBS. Price target lifts to $130 from $120 and FY08 EPS estimates upped to $0.67 from $0.54. Reiterates Buy rating.

VMware 2008 estimates increased at Deutsche Bank by 19 cents to $1.15 a share following blowout quarter. Maintained Hold rating.