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Equity Brief: Ratings Changes for December 14th: MRK, MRO, MSFT, MSTR, MU, MYRG, NCT, NDAQ



2012-12-14 16:24:11 -


A number of stocks were upgraded and downgraded by equities research analysts
today, as reported by Analyst Ratings Network ( bit.ly/equitybriefdaily)
and Equity Brief:

Zacks reiterated its neutral rating on shares of Merck & Co Inc (MRK). They have
a $48.00 price target on the stock. Zacks' analyst wrote, "Merck posted third
quarter 2012 EPS of $0.95, a couple of cents above the Zacks Consensus Estimate
and 1.1% above the year-ago earnings. Revenues fell 4.4% to $11,488 million,
missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $11,672 million. Revenues were hit by
the Singulair patent expiry and negative currency impact. Merck tightened its
2012 outlook to $3.78 - $3.82 per share. Revenues are expected to remain flat or
close to 2011 levels. While headwinds remain in the form of the Singulair
genericization, EU pricing pressure, unfavorable currency movement, US health
care reform, the Remicade/Simponi transition and pipeline setbacks, some of the
company's recent launches should start contributing significantly to the top
line in the forthcoming quarters. We remain Neutral on the stock."

Goldman Sachs upgraded shares of Marathon Oil Co. (MRO) from a neutral rating to
a buy rating. Goldman Sachs now has a $87.00 price target on the stock, up
previously from $74.00.

BMO Capital Markets initiated coverage on shares of Microsoft Corp (MSFT). They
issued a market perform rating on the stock and set a $30.00 price target.

Janney Montgomery Scott initiated coverage on shares of Microsoft Corp (MSFT).
They issued a neutral rating on the stock.

Janney Montgomery Scott initiated coverage on shares of MicroStrategy
Incorporated (MSTR). They issued a neutral rating on the stock.

Drexel Hamilton upgraded shares of Micron Technology, Inc. (MU) from a hold
rating to a buy rating.

Johnson Rice downgraded shares of MYR Group (MYRG) from an overweight rating to
an equal weight rating.

UBS AG initiated coverage on shares of Newcastle Investment Corp (NCT). They
issued a buy rating on the stock and set a $10.00 price target.

Keefe, Bruyette & Woods downgraded shares of NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc. (NDAQ) from
an outperform rating to a market perform rating. Their analysts now have a
$26.00 price target on the stock, down previously from $29.00.

Deutsche Bank downgraded shares of Annaly Capital Management, Inc. (NLY) from a
buy rating to a hold rating.

Stay on top of analysts' coverage with Analyst Ratings Network's free daily
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and initiations. Register at bit.ly/equitybriefdaily

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