Bank Analysts Issued New Grades on These Top Stocks June 8th

Following is a list of recent analyst upgrades and downgrades of various stocks. Note that the terminology used for various ratings varies across firms.  E.g., some firms rated “buys” as “outperform” or simply “buy,” or rated “holds” as “neutral” or “perform,” etc.

New analyst upgrades:

  1. Foster Wheeler (NASDAQ:FWLT): BB&T Capital Markets upgraded the stock from Hold to Buy.  No price target has been given on the stock.  About the company: Foster Wheeler AG provides design, engineering, construction, manufacturing, project development and management, research, plant operations, and environmental services. The Company serves the petrochemical, petroleum and gas, pharmaceutical, chemical processing, and other industries. Foster Wheeler’s products include fired heaters and steam generating units.
  2. Northern Oil & Gas (AMEX:NOG): CapitalOne  upgraded the stock to Strong Buy with a price target of $37.  About the company: Northern Oil and Gas, Inc. is an oil and gas exploration and production company. The Company is currently focused on the Rocky Mountain regions of the United States. Competitors to Watch: Brigham Exploration Co. (NASDAQ:BEXP), Voyager Oil & Gas, Inc. (VOG), Oasis Petroleum Inc. (NYSE:OAS), Kodiak Oil & Gas Corp. (AMEX:KOG), GeoResources, Inc. (NASDAQ:GEOI), Encore Energy Partners LP (NYSE:ENP), Bill Barrett Corporation (NYSE:BBG), Gasco Energy, Inc. (AMEX:GSX), Delta Petroleum Corp. (NASDAQ:DPTR), Chevron (NYSE:CVX), Chesapeake (NYSE:CHK), ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM) and BP plc (NYSE:BP).
  3. Cabot Oil & Gas (NYSE:COG): Canaccord Genuity upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold with a price target of $85.  Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation is an independent oil and gas company that develops, exploits, and explores oil and gas properties located in North America. The Company holds interests Appalachian Basin, onshore Gulf Coast, including south and east Texas and north Louisiana, the Rocky Mountains and the Anadarko Basin as well as in the deep gas basin of Western Canada. Competitors to Watch: EOG Resources, Inc. (NYSE:EOG), Pinnacle Gas Resources, Inc. (PINN), Vanguard Natural Resources, LLC (NYSE:VNR), Magnum Hunter Resources Corp (NYSE:MHR), Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (NYSE:APC), PrimeEnergy Corporation (NASDAQ:PNRG), SM Energy Co. (NYSE:SM), EV Energy Partners, L.P. (NASDAQ:EVEP), Continental Resources, Inc. (NYSE:CLR), and Range Resources Corp. (NYSE:RRC).
  4. Bob Evans (NASDAQ:BOBE): Miller Tabak upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold with a price target of $35.  Bob Evans Farms, Inc. owns and operates full-service, family restaurants. The Company also produces and distributes pork sausages and a variety of complementary homestyle convenience food items.
  5. Carrizo Oil & Gas (NASDAQ:CRZO): Howard Weil upgraded the stock to Market Outperform from Market Perform with a price target of $50.  Carrizo Oil & Gas, Inc. explores for and produces natural gas and crude oil. The Company develops and exploits onshore properties along the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast regions.
  6. Dolby Labs (NYSE:DLB): Brigantine upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold with a price target of $50.  Dolby Laboratories Inc. develops audio signal processing systems for the motion picture, broadcasting, and music recording industries, as well as the consumer market.
  7. G-III Apparel (NASDAQ:GIII) KeyBanc Capital Markets upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold with a price target of $42.  G-III Apparel Group, Ltd. manufactures and distributes leather and non-leather outerwear apparel. The Company has fashion licenses with Kenneth Cole, Jones Apparel Group, Cole Haan, and Timberland. GIII own labels GIII, Siena Studio, Colebrook & Co, JLC, JL Colebrook, and ColeB. G-III also has licensing agreements with the NFL, NHL, NBA, and MLB.
  8. Noble Corp (NYSE:NE) Dahlman Rose upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold, with a price target of $48.  Noble Corporation provides diversified services for the oil and gas industry. The Company provides contract drilling services with its fleet of offshore drilling units located in markets worldwide. Noble also provides labor contract drilling services, well site and project management services, and engineering services. Competitors to Watch: Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO), Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (NYSE:APC), EOG Resources, Inc. (NYSE:EOG), Newfield Exploration Co. (NYSE:NFX), Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX), Apache Corporation (NYSE:APA), Harvest Natural Resources, Inc. (NYSE:HNR), Murphy Oil Corporation (NYSE:MUR), Crimson Exploration Inc. (NASDAQ:CXPO), Chesapeake (NYSE:CHK), ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM), BP plc (NYSE:BP) and ATP Oil & Gas Corporation (NASDAQ:ATPG).
  9. Ensco (ESV): Dahlman Rose upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold with a price target of $70.  Ensco PLC is an international offshore contract drilling company. The Company’s operations are concentrated in the geographic regions of Asia Pacific (which includes Asia, the Middle East, Australia and New Zealand), Europe/Africa and North and South America.
  10. Verizon (NYSE:VZ): Oppenheimer upgraded the stock to Outperform from Perform, with a price target of $42.  Verizon Communications Inc. is an integrated telecommunications company that provides wire line voice and data services, wireless services, Internet services, and published directory information. The Company also provides network services for the federal government including business phone lines, data services, telecommunications equipment and payphones. Competitors to Watch: AT&T, Inc. (NYSE:T), Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE:Q), Deutsche Telekom (DTEGY), MetroPCS (NYSE:PCS), Terremark (NASDAQ:TMRK), Qwest (NYSE:Q), CenturyLink (NYSE:CTL), NTELOS Holdings (NASDAQ:NTLS), Vodafone (NASDAQ:VOD), Leap Wireless (NASDAQ:LEAP), Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Nokia (NYSE:NOK), Research in Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) and Sprint Nextel Corp. (NYSE:S).
  11. Clearwire (NASDAQ:CLWR): Kaufman Bros. upgraded the stock to Buy from Home, with a price target of $6.  Clearwire Corporation provides wireless broadband services. The Company operates a wireless network in the United States as well as other countries.
  12. Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) Ticonderoga upgraded the stock from Neutral to Buy, with a price target of $145.  Franklin Resources, Inc. provides investment advisory services to mutual fund, retirement, institutional/separate accounts and high net worth investors. The Company manages various asset classes including domestic, international/global and emerging markets equity, domestic, international and municipal fixed income, money funds, alternative investments, and hedge funds.

(Note: Data are sourced from here.  Selected financial data are sourced from Yahoo! Finance.  All data are assumed to be accurate.)

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