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Banc of America Trims Tiffany to Neutral

Banc of America cut Tiffany & Co. (TIF) to neutral from buy.

Analyst Dana Cohen says Tiffany requires acceleration in Japan, and no slowdown in the U.S. to make money. She notes the track record in Japan over the last few years is quite spotty, and says U.S. trends have held up earnings growth. However, she thinks there are problems even though 60% of the business is located in the US, if Japan issues don't improve.

Cohen cut the $1.62 fiscal 2005 (Jan) earnings per share estimate to $1.59, and cut the $1.81 fiscal 2006 estimate to $1.77. Also, she cut the $48 target to $33, which is based on a multiple of 19 times her $1.81 fiscal 2005 earnings per share estimate, given the higher risk related to the U.S. outlook.

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