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Notable news items from the past few days and price action from Friday’s trading session.

  • SBUX was upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley.  The price target is now $40.
  • SBUX CEO Howard Schultz features in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, published today, and stated that the company has no intention of imposing across-the-board price increases at this point.  The company has coffee locked for fiscal 2011.  He also described MCD’s impact on Starbucks’ coffee business as “de minimis”.
  • EAT upgraded from Buy to Neutral at UBS.  The price target was raised to $30 from $23.
  • MCD Japan saw February same-store sales rise 4.3%.
  • An article in USA Today describes how calorie labeling doesn’t change fast-food orders.
  • TAST gained 5.5% on strong volume on Friday, followed by CMG which gained 3.3% on steady volume to round out a solid week for the burrito chain’s stock.  On a one-month and three-month basis, CMG had underperformed its peers’ average price performance as commodity and labor concerns weighed on sentiment. 
  • DIN gained 2.4% on accelerating volume during Friday’s trading session.
  • CBRL continues to feel the pressure from gas prices, declining another 2.2% on accelerating volume.  DRI and MSSR also declined on accelerating volume on Friday. 

TALES OF THE TAPE: SBUX, EAT, MCD, TAST, DIN, CBRL, DRI, MSSR - stocks 37

Howard Penney

Managing Director