Change in Ratings Alcoa ( AA) downgraded at Goldman Sachs to Neutral from Buy based on lower aluminum price expectations in 2008-2010. See drop in metal prices in 2009, with modest recovery in 2010. Expect robust consumption in China despite slowing economic growth. Price target slashed to $26 from $50. Akamai ( AKAM) downgraded at Goldman Sachs to Sell from Neutral based on mounting competition in media and software-delivery spaces. See downside risk to longer-term estimates based on lasting pressure. Price target cut to $14.50 from $21.50. AptarGroup ( ATR) downgraded at Merrill from Buy to Neutral. $42 price target. Estimates also cut, given the company's reliance on growth in Europe. Con-Way ( CNW) downgraded at Goldman Sachs to Neutral from Buy based on negative Q3 earnings preannouncement. Note worse-than-expected volumes at other LTL carriers, decelerating tonnage trends and weakness in U.S. economy. Prefer to remain on sidelines now based on company's operating leverage and pricing pressure from competitors. Target cut to $40 from $56. Con-Way downgraded at JPMorgan to Neutral from Overweight. Digital River ( DRIV) upgraded at Goldman Sachs to Neutral from Sell based on more accurate risk/reward following recent pullback. See some potential risk from consumer spending weakness in Europe, but also see opportunity for expansion into new areas including games and electronics. Price target trimmed to $34 from $37. eBay ( EBAY) downgraded at Morgan Stanley from Overweight to Equal-weight. Seller checks indicate that trends deteriorated more than expected during the third quarter. Estimates also cut through 2009.
Iron Mountain ( IRM) upgraded at Citigroup from Hold to Buy. $32 price target. Stock is down 16% since late August, although business fundamentals have improved. Lear ( LEA) upgraded at Citigroup from Sell to Hold. $11 price target. Valuation call, as the company should be helped by GM's ( GM) market share gains in light trucks and the recent pullback in copper prices. Las Vegas Sands ( LVS) downgraded at Morgan Stanley from Overweight to Equal-weight. Visa restrictions will hurt the Macau business and Vegas should continue to slow down in 2009. Principal Financial ( PFG) downgraded at Morgan Stanley from Equal-weight to Underweight. $36 price target. Company is exposed to three major concerns in the life insurance industry. Pactiv ( PTV) upgraded at Merrill from Neutral to Buy. $30 price target. See strong prospects for double-digit earnings growth in 2009. Televisa ( TV) upgraded at Credit Suisse to Outperform from Neutral based on resilient advertising revenue and strong defensive characteristics. Maintained $32 target price. Wynn Resorts ( WYNN) downgraded at Morgan Stanley from Overweight to Equal-weight. Company has outperformed its peers, and Macau traffic will be hurt by visa restrictions. Vegas results could also fall short of expectations in 2009. Stock Comments/EPS Changes AT&T ( T) target cut at Credit Suisse to $34 from $36 based on better wireless adds, which amount to near-term dilution and pressure in consumer wireline. Maintained Neutral rating. Two energy E&P names downgraded at Merrill. Berry Petroleum ( BRY) was downgraded from Buy to Underperform. The rating on Denbury Resources ( DNR) was also cut from Neutral to Underperform based on a bearish outlook for oil prices.