Target last week began rolling out the Shops at Target collections. Earlier this year, Target said it had struck deals with five independent boutiques to create small collections of new products that would be sold through Target stores. The products will be on sale for a limited time and eventually be replaced by products from new boutiques.

The strategy: differentiate Target from its competitors.

Dave Brennan, a marketing professor and co-director of the Institute for Retailing Excellence at the University of St. Thomas told the Star Tribune: "It's a way of showing shoppers it's a different kind of store -- it's not Wal-Mart."


For 20 years the Wall Street Journal has been publishing a list of the top-ranked stock analysts on Wall Street. This year the newspaper recognized analysts from 66 firms in 44 industry groups. In all they handed out 132 awards. Goldman Sachs analysts lead the way with nine awards for their 63 analysts that qualified for the award, followed by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, which had 65 analysts qualify and seven won awards.

Minneapolis-based Piper Jaffray had 36 analysts qualify and three analysts were recognized: Michael Cox, who covers electronic and electrical equipment, won a bronze award; Sean Wieland, who covers software companies, is a three-year winner and earned a bronze this year, and Peter Appert, a six-year winner, earned a silver award in the advertising and publishing category.

Analysts got credit for being right about buy and sell recommendations. Wieland and Appert work out of Piper's San Francisco office and Cox works out of New York.