Salomon Smith Barney upgraded Nike (NKE) to buy from outperform.
Analyst Carol Murray says fourth quarter earnings per share results exceeded her $0.73 EPS estimate. She notes the upside was driven by stronger sales growth and an increase in gross margins. She says results indicate the company is building a more profitable business model. As a result, it raised the fiscal 2003 (May) EPS estimate to $2.86 and initiated a $3.25 fiscal 2004 EPS estimate. Murray has a $68 price target.