24/7 Wall St. Top Analyst Calls of the Week (BAC, BBY, BIIB, BCSI, GOOG, LXK, MMI, NOK, ODP, ORCL, PAAS, RIMM, RVBD, S, SBUX, TEVA, VRSK, V)

Pan American Silver Corp. (NASDAQ: PAAS) has been a wishy-washy and flaky stock with the wild market and with the wild ride of gold and silver.  This one was raised to “Buy” at Canaccord Genuity on Wednesday after having been previously downgraded at the end of July when the stock was close to 10% higher than the current price.  Apparently the devil’s metal is alive and well after having closed above $42.00 on Friday.

Research-in-Motion Ltd. (NASDAQ: RIMM) had a controversial week, sort of, after the Motorola-Google deal as some are speculating that the smartphone maker of the Crackberry (now called the crap-berry or dingle-berry) could be the next acquisition.  The announced death of what is left of Palm this week may make this one obsolete.  A very late to the game call was given on Tuesday when RIM was Cut to Sell at Societe Generale.  The gutsy call, or at least the ‘less bad’ call came on Friday on RIM when the stock was raised to Hold from Underperform at Jefferies.  Jefferies call is based upon enough is enough…

Riverbed Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ: RVBD) had an awful week along with the bulk of technology companies.  The stock had already been beaten up and on Tuesday morning it was Raised to Buy at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey.  Shares fell almost another 20% before it was all said and done and the stock is now down half from the mid-July pre-earnings report.

Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE: S) has a bottom fishing call out this last week after the battered cellular carrier was raised to Buy at Collins Stewart.  The price target is $5.00 per share, leaving an implied upside of about 46% from the $3.42 close on Friday if these guys end up being correct.  If any truth to the Clearwire merger possible report is real, this call could become very interesting (and controversial).

Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ: SBUX) may have already pulled back to less pricey levels from the $40.00+ peak in July, but on Thursday the research team at Oppenheimer Cut to the rating down to Perform from Outperform.  This is symbolic because it implies that the best juice from its great and successful turnaround has been milked.  Food for thought, or coffee for thought.

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Limited (NASDAQ: TEVA) cannot seem to catch a break anywhere and the stock keeps getting cheaper and cheaper on the valuation front when you consider that it is actually supposed to grow earnings even after the problems it has seen.  The stock was initiated in new coverage on Thursday with an ‘Outperform’ rating and fair value of what was said to be $49 to $50 at Leerink Swann.  Being a Teva Bull has been a painful exercise for many analysts in 2011.

Verisk Analytics, Inc. (NASDAQ: VRSK) was perhaps a tag-along call and perhaps something else for the risk management and analytics company serving insurance, mortgage, and healthcare markets.  What is interesting here is that an upgrade came after it was listed as a new Warren Buffett stock holding this week.  On Friday it was raised to Outperform with a $39.00 price target at KBW and the stock closed at $31.64 on Friday as well.

Visa, Inc. (NYSE: V) closed up on Monday after the credit card processing giant was raised to the prized Conviction Buy List at Goldman Sachs.  The market knocked the stock way down though by about $6.00 to $79.60.  That is a big discount now to the $96.00 price target.

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