J.C. Penney Co. Inc.'s stock surged 3.6% in midday trade, after the department store was upgraded to buy from hold at Deutsche Bank. The stock has run up 12% over the past month, while the S&P 500 has declined about 5.7%. The firm credits J.C. Penney for having a solid merchandising team, the right brands and the appropriate inventory levels for key items. Deutsche Bank made the upgrade based on Chief Executive Marvin Ellison's moves towards optimizing pricing, the supply chain, IT, and reducing corporate redundancies. In-store features, such as a new footwear presentation and the continued success of the Sephora offering were also encouraging. The firm also raised J.C. Penney's price target to $12 from $10.
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