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Equity Brief: Ratings Changes for November 15th: AFAM, ALB, AMP, ANF, BBY, BHI, BVN, CNP, COG


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

Jefferies Group lowered its price target on shares of Almost Family, Inc. (NASDAQ: AFAM) from $23.50 to $19.00. They have a hold rating on the stock. They wrote, "We continue to have a neutral view on AFAM as the company is having to adapt to new headwinds from payment structure changes from Medicare Advantage payors, as well as ongoing volume challenges and scheduled Medicare rate cuts. Risk for incremental reimbursement pressure on home nursing providers such as AFAM also remains high as "fiscal cliff" discussions in DC have intensified the need for savings from the Medicare program."

Macquarie initiated coverage on shares of Albemarle Co. (NYSE: ALB). They issued an outperform rating on the stock and set a $68.00 price target.

RBC Capital downgraded shares of Ameriprise Financial, Inc. (NYSE: AMP) from a top pick rating to an outperform rating. Their analysts now have a $71.00 price target on the stock, down previously from $72.00.

Janney Montgomery Scott upgraded shares of Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) from a neutral rating to a buy rating. Janney Montgomery Scott now has a $52.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $38.00.

Sterne Agee upgraded shares of Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) from a neutral rating to a buy rating. Sterne Agee now has a $54.00 price target on the stock.

Citigroup upgraded shares of Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) from a sell rating to a neutral rating.

Credit Suisse upgraded shares of Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) from an underperform rating to a neutral rating. Credit Suisse now has a $46.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $32.00.

William Blair upgraded shares of Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) from a market perform rating to an outperform rating.

Credit Agricole upgraded shares of Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) from an outperform rating to a buy rating. Credit Agricole now has a $52.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $39.00.

Nomura upgraded shares of Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) from a neutral rating to a buy rating.

UBS AG lowered its price target on shares of Best Buy Co., Inc. (NYSE: BBY) from $18.00 to $16.75. They have a neutral rating on the stock.

Credit Agricole upgraded shares of Baker Hughes (BHI) from an outperform rating to a buy rating. Credit Agricole now has a $51.00 price target on the stock.

Bank of America downgraded shares of Compania de Minas Buenaventura SA (BVN) from a neutral rating to an underperform rating. They wrote, "We downgrade Buenaventura to Underperform and revise our PO to US$35/sh (from US$43/sh). In our view, with the update on Chucapaca and still very little visibility on the development of Minas Conga, we are concerned with the company's production sustainability. On the other hand, we believe gold prices can reach US$2,400/oz by end of 2014 and we think, over time, BVN should still replace reserves, as it has been a successful exploration company, but visibility now is more limited."

Zacks reiterated its neutral rating on shares of CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (CNP). They have a $21.00 price target on the stock. Zacks' analyst wrote, "CenterPoint Energy Inc., with its balanced portfolio of electric and natural gas businesses, provides a diversified risk profile, along with stable earnings and cash flow. Going forward, our bullish outlook for the company is supported by stable regulated operations, higher rates, ongoing infrastructure development projects, a strong balance sheet and a high dividend yield. However, this is partially offset by pending regulatory cases, including the outcome of the Texas rate case, the tepid economy, lower demand for electricity, falling wholesale natural gas prices and a significant presence in a hurricane prone section of the U.S. Thus we maintain our Neutral recommendation on CenterPoint Energy with a target price of $21.00."

Societe Generale downgraded shares of Cabot Oil & Gas (COG) from a buy rating to a hold rating.

BMO Capital Markets reiterated its outperform rating on shares of Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO). They have a $22.00 price target on the stock. They wrote, "CSCO defied expectations and delivered a solid quarter and marginally better guidance. We could nitpick on the gross margin outlook and CSCO is clearly not out of the macro woods yet, but the execution in the quarter was impressive and the comments on US enterprise spending should lift the entire networking group. We continue to view shares of CSCO as undervalued and look for the strong showing to help narrow the valuation gap. We rate Cisco shares at Outperform and are maintaining our price target of $22, which represents 10x our CY13 FCF estimate of $2.16."

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