Stock Upgrades: You Can't Stem the Rising Tide at Celgene

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It may be tempting fate, especially in a trading week that ominously ends on Friday the 13th, but yesterday Wall Street was inspired by a film from its annus horribilis of 1987. Released but one month after that year's crash, Planes, Trains and Automobiles was a box office favorite, and yesterday it also proved a pretty profitable trading strategy. US markets rose to records, ably assisted by an analyst-inspired 2.71% advance in debut stock American Airlines ( AAL ), a broker boost propelling FreightCar America ( RAIL ) 5.67% higher, and General Motors ( GM ) gaining 1.82% to a post-restructuring peak. Even as the S&P 500 Index (INDEXSP:.INX) reached a new high, not all equities benefited from the rising tide. Abercrombie & Fitch ( ANF ) tumbled 2.21% after renewing the $1.5 million salary of its endlessly controversial CEO. With the stock having slumped 29% this year some thought he should be canned but there was fat chance of that . At least the head of Lululemon Athletica ( LULU ), having similarly rubbed customers ( specifically their thighs ) the wrong way, is stepping down.

In terms of economic events that may move US markets this morning, October wholesale trade inventories are released at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. Regarding specific stocks, expect earnings announcements out of Autozone (AZO), Burlington Stores (BURL), H&R Block (HRB), HD Supply Holdings (HDS), Leidos Holdings (LDOS), Smith & Wesson (SWHC), and Toll Brothers (TOL).

Antofagasta (OTCMKTS:ANFGY): The copper miner gets moved to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse.

Ariad Pharmaceuticals (ARIA): Stifel boosts the stock to Buy from Hold.

Blackhawk Network (HAWK): Shares are now Buy from Neutral at Citigroup. Its amended price objective is $27.

Celgene (CELG): Biotech stock Celgene, a market leader in stem-cell drugs, has surged 116.08% in the past year. There is more good news for it today, as Credit Suisse raises its recommendation to Outperform from Neutral.

Geron (GERN): GERN gets upgraded to Buy from Hold at Needham, whose target price is $10. Geron shares are surging some 13.95% as I write this article, after the company presented Phase II data for imetelstat in myelofibrosis patients at the American Society for Hematology.

Harman International (HAR): Shares are moved to Outperform from Market Perform with Wells Fargo.

Hellenic Telecom (OTCMKTS:HLTOY): JPMorgan gives the Greek phone firm an Overweight-from-Neutral upgrade.

Johnson Controls (JCI): Johnson Controls is taken to Top Pick from Outperform at RBC Capital, whose price objective is $61. The stock is seen as an ongoing, and increasingly impressive, turnaround story.

PerkinElmer (PKI): The stock is now Outperform from Neutral at Macquarie.

Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDS.A): JPMorgan moves the European oil giant to Neutral from Underweight.

United Rentals (URI): Amid solid operating fundamentals, the stock gets upgraded to Top Pick from Outperform at RBC Capital. Its target, previously $72, increases to $85.

Vivendi : (OTCMKTS:VIVHY): Shares are trading higher in Europe today on the back of a Buy-from-Hold boost by Deutsche Bank.

(See also: New Stock Coverage: Papa John's Just Hit the Mother Lode and Stock Downgrades: Grim Prognosis for Quest Diagnostics )



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Stocks

Referenced Stocks: AAL , ANF , GM , LULU , RAIL

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