) to neutral from overweight.
Analyst Michael Weinstein believes prospects remain relatively upbeat for the vision care pharmaceuticals company. Still, after a strong 2002 he sees greater upside potential with comparable companies that offer higher top-line growth potential and more meaningful leverage through the operating income line.
Weinstein notes his MedTech strategy for 2003 favors higher beta cardiovascular names over orthopedic companies and more traditional medical suppliers. As a result, his Alcon downgrade is in light of a recent upgrade of cardiovascular company St. Jude Medical, which he named his Top Pick for 2003.