Two notes today to pass on from the research team at West End-based Avondale Partners: First, retail analyst Mark Montagna has downgraded shares of Genesco to 'market perform' from 'outperform,' where he'd had them for the last several years. Montagna, who also lowered his price target for Genesco to $67 from $70, says the shoe and hat seller is bearing some of the brunt of consumers ramping up spending on their homes, which is expected to continue for a while. Combined with sluggish mall traffic and intense price competition, he adds, leaves CEO Bob Dennis and his team with fewer ways to boost margins. Montagna's fiscal Q3 estimate now stands at $1.35 versus the Street's $1.38 and he sees same-store sales dipping 3 percent. Genesco shares (Ticker: GCO) are up about 1 percent to about $66.80 this morning and have risen about 20 percent year to date.
There are no such worries for Montagna's colleague Kevin Campbell, who has lifted his price target for HCA Holdings to $53 from $47. Cost controls are still contributing to the story, he says, and investors shouldn't ignore the fact that management just bought back $500 million worth of stock near its highs. Campbell also has added 5 percent to his 2014 EPS estimates, which now stands at $3.79. Shares of HCA (Ticker: HCA) are up nicely this morning to almost $45.
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