Raging Bull, released 33 years ago, remains the most recent prized possession on Robert De Niro's mantelpiece thanks to events in Hollywood last night, and Wall Street's own animal spirits are suddenly starting to look similarly old.
The S&P 500 Index (^GSPC) snapped a seven-week win streak amid concerns over the looming sequestration. (For some strange reason the public feels that President Obama, golfing in Florida, and Congress, off on vacation, could work a bit harder to solve our current crisis.) Our Commander in Chief said avoiding Friday's coming calamity should be a "no brainer," but his attempts to map the human brain promptly sent navigation giant Garmin (GRMN) sinking 11%.
Elsewhere a legendary German business executive in his 90th year took his own life and a hiring freeze from Foxconn (FXCNY), long plagued by suicides, sent Apple (AAPL) tumbling another 2%.
No top-tier economic data due today, but earnings announcements are expected out Autodesk (ADSK), Caesars Entertainment (CZR), 3D Systems (DDD), FirstEnergy (FE), Hertz (HTZ), Lowe's (LOW), Pearson (PSO), and URS Corporation (URS).
CalAmp Corp. (CAMP): Northland Securities starts the stock at Outperform. Its price objective is $14.25.
Constellation Brands (STZ): The world's largest winemaker, whose shares have surged of late, is up again before the bell after being launched with a Buy at SunTrust. Its target price is $60.
Eaton (ETN): Credit Suisse covers the industrial equipment outfit at Outperform.
NV Energy (NVE): NVE is a new Hold with Wunderlich, whose target is $20. The rising risk of additional regulation, allied to a steep valuation after recent share price strength, keeps the broker from being more constructive.
TRI Pointe Homes (TPH): FBR Capital covers the California-based maker of single-family homes at an Outperform, assigning a price objective of $22. Exposure to an improving macroeconomic environment and improved demographic trends are each seen as catalysts.