Cooking Good: BOA Lifts Williams Sonoma

Analyst is pleased with the surprise appointment of new CEO Dale Hilpert

Banc of America upgraded Williams Sonoma (WSM ) to strong buy from market perform.

Analyst Shelly Hale upgraded her rating on the shares on the surprise appointment of Dale Hilpert as CEO. She says Hilpert is a proven leader with a reputation as strong, fiscally responsible operator. Hale expects him to concentrate his efforts on the company's two key assets: Pottery Barn and the Williams-Sonoma brands. Under Hilpert's wing, she says the company could achieve fiscal 2002 (Jan). EPS of $1.40 or more in the wake of a weak calendar 2001. In short, she says Hilpert, in her opinion, is exactly what Williams Sonoma needs.

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