BUZZ-Valeant Pharmaceuticals: Mizuho raises to "Neutral"

Mon Aug 15, 2016 7:20am EDT
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** Canadian drugmaker's U.S.-listed shares up 3 pct at $25.70 premarket after Mizuho Securities upgrades to "neutral" from "underperform"

** Mizuho says that "because Valeant can relax its interest coverage covenants, we just don't think it will matter as much if the company misses its guidance in future quarters"

** Valeant is offering to pay lenders higher interest rates in order to obtain an amendment to its debt agreement that would loosen one of its covenants, Reuters reported on Tuesday

** Mizuho, which had an "underperform" rating on the stock since March, more than doubles its PT, to $25 from $11

** Now, 12 brokerages rate the stock the equivalent of 'hold', while 4 each rate it 'buy' or 'sell'; median PT $34

** Since Mizuho downgraded stock on March 21, stock had dropped 8 pct this yr vs. 11 pct rise in the S&P 500 healthcare index