Lafarge (LAF) shares fell Monday after BB&T Capital downgraded them to buy from strong buy.
Analyst Jack Kasprzak says the downgrade is a result of continued weak construction demand in the U.S. and his expectation that wallboard results will flatten out in 2003. He says cost pressures at the operating and corporate levels also have potential to negatively affect profitability in 2003.
He cuts his EPS estimates from $1.18 to $1.08 for the fourth quarter, and from $3.54 to $3.44 for 2003. Based on the lower estimates, he also cut his $40 12-month price target to $35.