- Barclays upgraded Western Digital (WDC) to overweight from equal weight.
- LDK Solar (LDK) was upgraded to buy from hold at Needham.
- Legg Mason (LM) was upgraded to outperform from neutral at Macquarie.
- Agilent (A) was upgraded to buy from hold at Stifel Nicolaus.
- Wells Fargo upgraded Dean Foods (DF) to outperform from market perform and Developers Diversified (DDR) to market perform from underperform.
- Deutsche Bank also upgraded Developers Diversified, to buy from hold.
- Northrop Grumman (NOC) was upgraded to sell from conviction sell at Goldman.
- MYR Group (MYRG) was upgraded to buy from hold at BB&T.
"In the emerging markets arena, India frequently plays second-fiddle to China; but investors should not be deceived: India offers plenty of opportunities, such as Tata Motors (TTM)," says Brandon Clay.
The editor of Invest with an Edge explains "Tata is India's top automaker and the owner of the Jaguar and Land Rover luxury brands.
"India is the second-largest country in the world by population. It's also growing fast, but not as fast as China. The government wants to see annual economic growth top 10%. That's good stuff.
TTM opened this morning at $20.36. So far today the stock has hit a low of $20.36 and a high of $20.73. As of 12:10, TTM is trading at $20.60 up 0.54 (2.7%). The chart for TTM looks bullish and S&P gives TTM a positive 4 STARS (out of 5) buy ranking.
"The Cabot China-Timer has ﬂashed a new buy signal, telling us the trend of Chinese and emerging market stocks has turned back up. No one knows how long this signal will persist, and you shouldn't try to guess. Instead, your best move is to go with the evidence, which is now bullish," observes Paul Goodwin.
The editor of The Cabot China & Emerging Markets Report explains, "India's Tata Motors (TTM), the largest truck and auto maker in the subcontinent, has been a little of both over the years, but it looks like the time is right for a new advance.
So, now Daimler has unloaded its 5.34% position, which comes to roughly $428 million. In today's trading, the shares of Tata are down 4%.
TTM opened this morning at $6.96. So far today the stock has hit a low of $6.95 and a high of $8.30. As of 11:45, TTM is trading at $7.65, up 1.01 (15.2%). The chart for TTM looks neutral and S&P gives TTM a 3 STARS (out of 5) hold ranking.
"Trouble is, nobody seems to have the interest - or the equity - to make a deal," Fortune reports.
Most respected companies, bankruptcy odds watch for 10 companies & small companies, big brands - Today in Money 6/10
Bankruptcy Odds Watch
What are the odds that General Motors will have to file for bankruptcy by the end of the year? 30-in-1. What about American Airlines? 2-in-1. Check out 24/7 Wall Street's Bankruptcy Odds Watch on 10 popular companies and what the odds that Northwest, United Airlines, Wachovia, Ford Motor and more will file for bankruptcy.
24/7 Wall St.: The 24/7 Wall St. Bankruptcy Odds Watch
Small Companies, Big Brands
Take a look at 10 overachievers that became breakthrough success stories. See how they made their products a household name. They include Ciao Bella, Clif Bar, John Fluevog Boots & Shoes, Pirate's Booty, The Republic of Tea and more.
Small Companies, Big Brands - BusinessWeek
- The banking unit of National City Corporation (NYSE: NCC) recently entered into a "memorandum of understanding" with federal regulators, the Wall Street Journal reported. The banking unit has bad loans, and the agreement basically means that the bank is on probation, as the government pressures financial institutions.
- The Wall Street Journal also reported that Justice Department criminal prosecutors and its U.S. attorney's office in Brooklyn, NY are investigating American International Group Inc (NYSE: AIG) to see if they overstated the value of contracts tied to subprime mortgages.
- Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc (NYSE: LEH) is thinking of releasing its Q2 results a week earlier than planned, and announcing a capital raising plan at the same time, according to the New York Post, in order to reduce negative speculation about its future.
- The Economic Times reported that Indian auto companies Tata Motors Limited (NYSE: TTM) and Mahindra and Mahindra may be interested in acquiring Hummer from General Motors Corporation (NYSE: GM).
Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) is cutting production at its Volvo unit, according to The Wall Street Journal. The move, which could affect one-third of workers -- some 700 -- is seen as an attempt to cut the costs and losses at the upscale Swedish brand.
The question everyone is asking is whether this move is done in preparation for a sale. According to "people familiar with the matter" who discussed such things with the Journal, CEO Alan Mulally is interested in putting Volvo, whose sales have been declining, on the block. Of course, to analysts, Mulally sang a different tune last month, saying the priority is improve the Swedish auto maker operations "dramatically."
As Kirk Kerkorian's Tracinda Corp. continues to build its stake int he company, he may also have a thing or two to say on the matter.
For now, Volvo is cutting where it makes larger, less popular vehicles, and it plans to make fewer cars overall. But can this make Volvo more profitable for Ford, or at least more attractive to buyers? There are costs associated with producing a smaller number of vehicles, but with Volvo reporting 22,000 fewer vehicles sold during the first quarter, cutting production makes sense. Another matter Ford has to consider is the massive losses it suffered lately just from the kronor-dollar exchange rate.
It was reported long ago that Ford Motor (NYSE: F) was shopping its Jaguar and Land Rover brands. Today it finally announced it has closed the deal to sell these premier British brands to Tata Motors (NYSE: TTM) of India for $2.3 billion. Ford, which has been losing money, found its share price way down, closing yesterday at $5.96 (now up a few cents in premarket trading) and was in need of a cash infusion.
Tata Motors, having just introduced a low-end $2,500 car to the Indian market, is now filling out the upper end of the spectrum by bringing these two well known British brands to a country with a tradition and heritage long ago saturated with British "imperialist" remnants like cricket and tea time. If Jaguar and Land Rover are to be revitalized, then Tata Motors probably has a better chance of success than most.
Ford bought Jaguar for $2.5 billion in 1989 and Land Rover for $2.7 billion in 2000. Nine months ago I posted Chasing Value: Tata Motors LTD - patience, patience, GOT IT! and now Tata has got it! What it hopes to do with these brands is gain some international credibility, based on a solid Indian foundation.
Tata's stock closed yesterday at $17.36, up slightly on the rumors. It is about midway between its 52-week low of $14.71 and its high or $21.30. This deal could send both companies forward humming a new tune. I would even speculate more wildly just for fun that in this world of expanding markets, integrated economies and corporate consolidation, Ford and Tata Motors could one day find reason to unite.
Sheldon Liber is the CEO of a small private investment company and the principal for design and research at an architecture & planning firm. He writes the columns Chasing Value and Serious Money. Disclosure: We own shares in TTM.
Stocks: beware the sucker's rally, claims that boost insurance rates & top suburbs to live well - Today in Money 3/26
Stocks: Beware the Sucker's Rally
Have equities finally hit bottom, or is the market's recent rebound a trap for overeager investors?
Stocks: Beware the Sucker's Rally
Stocks Tarnished By 'The Lost Decade'
The stock market is trading right where it was nine years ago. The current market turmoil may result in a lost decade like the 1930s and the 1970s. Some believe the troubles are severe enough that the period of weakness isn't over.
Will Filing a Claim Boost Your Insurance Rates?
When should you make an insurance claim? For many, the answer is a no-brainer: "Whenever I have an accident or suffer damage to my house or car." Unfortunately, the decision about whether to file a claim is rarely so simple. In some cases, making a claim may cause an insurance company to raise your rates. In other instances, the decision to file a claim could put your name into a database that makes it difficult to get or maintain coverage in the future. Certain insurance claims are more likely to trigger an increase in premiums. Which ones could cost you?
Claims that boost your insurance rates -Bankrate.com
Your ID-theft Prevention Kit
The bad guys are more clever than ever. But you can still keep them at bay.
Your ID-Theft Prevention Kit - 2007-2008 - Kiplinger.com
Top Suburbs to Live Well
Forbes.com compiled a list of the best standard of living suburbs for the country's 15 largest cities with the help of NeighborhoodScout.com, a Rhode Island-based real estate research firm, which analyzed school quality, crime rates, income and education levels and homeownership rates for every incorporated and unincorporated town, city and village within 25 miles of the major city.
Top Suburbs To Live Well - Forbes.com
America's Best Bacon
Americans consumed more than $2 billion worth of bacon last year, but the tastiest stuff is made by a small group of artisanal producers.
With reports all over the place yesterday that Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) was close to a deal with Tata Motors Ltd. (NYSE: TTM), it is no surprise the deal was announced this morning with Ford selling British automakers Jaguar and Land Rover to India's Tata for roughly $2 billion.
Comcast Corp. (NASDAQ: CMCSA) and Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) are discussing a plan to fund a new wireless Internet venture that would be run by Sprint Nextel Corp. (NYSE: S) and Clearwire Corp. (NASDAQ: CLWR) and create a nationwide network using WiMax technology. This would provide faster wireless Web connection speeds for laptops and cell phones than the current networks, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT) plans to separate its struggling handset business from its other operations. Caving to pressures from activist investor Carl Icahn to make changes, the AP reported that "Motorola said it will split the handset business from a separate company that will encompass its home and networks business, which sells TV set-top boxes and modems, and its enterprise mobility solutions, which sells computing and communications equipment to businesses." MOT stock is up over 5.7% in premarket trading.
Fixing 5 painful money screw-ups, invest like the best in '08 & why your taxes are going up - Today in Money 3/25
Fixing 5 Painful Money Screw-Ups
You goofed. Forget to pay your credit-card bill? Neglected to file a tax return or pay a speeding ticket? You can easily remedy these and other money blunders. Here are lessons to remedy a blow to your credit rating, insurance premium and more.
Fixing Five Painful Financial Screw-Ups - 2007-2008 - Kiplinger.com
- The Wall Street Journal reported that private loans under the Federal Family Education Loan, or FEEL, program have begun to give way to the federal direct loan program, as private lenders run into subsidy cuts and problems raising capital. To date about 60 colleges and universities have made the switch.
- Carl Icahn, a 6.3% Motorola Inc (NYSE: MOT) shareholder, has sued the company to get board of director documents, turning away offers of two board seats, the Wall Street Journal reported. Icahn wants information about the company's unprofitable handset business.
- Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) is expected Wednesday to announce an agreement to sell its Jaguar and Land Rover units to India's Tata Motors Limited (NYSE: TTM) for about $2B, the Financial Times reported.