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J.P. Morgan analyst offers upgrade of Boyd Gaming

J.P. Morgan analyst Joseph Greff upgraded his rating of Boyd Gaming from underweight to neutral, but that did not provide a rallying point for the stock Monday.

Underweight is a Wall Street term advising clients to either sell their stock in a particular company or avoid buying it.

The stock slid 64 cents a share, or 7.1 percent, on Monday to close at $8.34 in the wake of news that the rebound from recession may be cooling. In addition, Greff’s report was not an enthusiastic endorsement of Boyd’s near-term prospects.

Greff raised his target price for the stock from $7 a share at year’s end to $8.50 after including a $1.5 million-per-acre value on the 85 acres that Boyd owns on the north Strip, where the company was building the Echelon resort.

In addition, Boyd had dropped 18 percent from the beginning of the year through June 3, while a group of similar casino companies tracked by Morgan has risen 13 percent.

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