Stock Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades to Watch in February

Wall St. Watchdog reveals information about companies for which stock analysts either upgraded or downgraded the shares on February 2nd.

Upgrades

Radware (NASDAQ:RDWR):

RBC Capital Mkts upgraded its rating on this company from Sector Perform to Outperform and changed its price target from $35 to $40.

Cadence Design (NASDAQ:CDNS):

DA Davidson upgraded its rating on this company from Neutral to Buy and changed its price target from $11 to $14.

Concur Tech (NASDAQ:CNQR):

UBS upgraded its rating on this company from Neutral to Buy and changed its price target from $48 to $66.

Big Lots (NYSE:BIG): Reports retail sales for U.S. operations for Q4 of $1.622B, an increase of 7.7% compared to $1.507B for Q4 of FY10. These results exceeded company guidance which called for a 1%-2% increase in comparable store sales.

MKM Partners upgraded its rating on this company from Neutral to Buy and changed its price target to $48.

Open Text (NASDAQ:OTEX):

Stifel Nicolaus upgraded its rating on this company from Hold to Buy and changed its price target to $66.

GMX Resources (NYSE:GMXR):

Stifel Nicolaus upgraded its rating on this company from Sell to Hold.

Downgrades

Manpower (NYSE:MAN):

Barclays Capital downgraded its rating on this company from Overweight to Equal Weight and changed its price target to $50.

JDS Uniphase (NASDAQ:JDSU): Optical products maker JDS Uniphase (NASDAQ:JDSU) reported Q2 EPS of 15c, compared with analysts’ consensus estimate of 10c. The company’s revenue was also higher than expected. However, JDS Uniphase’s gross margin dropped to 46.8% from 47.3% in the prior quarter and 48.8% in the same period one year earlier. The company provided Q3 revenue guidance of $410M-$425M, versus the consensus of $418M. In a note to investors, Morgan Stanley said that the company predicted that its prices would decline 6% during the current quarter, compared with Q2. Prices typically drop just 2%-4% during the current quarter, the firm added. The greater than expected price declines will also hurt two of JDS Uniphase’s competitors, Finisar and Oclaro, added Morgan Stanley, which maintains an Equal Weight rating on JDS Uniphase, an Overweight rating on Finisar, and an Underweight rating on Oclaro. In late morning trading, JDS Uniphase dropped 87c, or 6.63% to $12.26, while Finisar sank 96c, or 4.59%, to $19.97 and Oclaro added 0.22% to $4.50.

UBS downgraded its rating on this company from Buy to Neutral and changed its price target from $13 to $14.5.

ATMI (NASDAQ:ATMI):

Miller Tabak downgraded its rating on this company from Hold to Sell and changed its price target from $19 to $21.

Sterling Construction (NASDAQ:STRL): Sterling Construction announced that it expects to report an after-tax loss for the three months ended December 31, 2011. Results for this period will reflect the impact of a pre-tax net charge of between $5.4 million and $6.4 million (or an after-tax net charge of between 23c-27c per fully diluted share) as a result of revisions to previous estimates of revenues and costs for a number of construction projects. The net revisions to our contract estimates were the result of different factors affecting various contracts, some positively and some negatively. The main factors resulting in the net charge were variances in productivity on several projects, site-specific conditions that differed from those expected at the time certain jobs were bid, and changes in estimates made by project managers in their periodic reviews of revenues and costs for certain contracts.

KeyBanc Capital Mkts downgraded its rating on this company from Buy to Hold.

Intersil (NASDAQ:ISIL):

Needham downgraded its rating on this company from Buy to Hold.

SandRidge Energy (NYSE:SD):

Howard Weil downgraded its rating on this company from Market Outperform to Market Perform and changed its price target to $10.

Sykes Enterprises (NASDAQ:SYKE):

Robert W. Baird downgraded its rating on this company from Outperform to Neutral and changed its price target to $20.

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To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com