Zacks Equity Research, Chicago, announced Jan. 9 that Highwoods Properties Inc., a real estate investment trust based in Raleigh, N.C., has been designated its "Bear of the Day," a stock expected to underperform the markets over the next three to six months. Zacks said the commercial REIT "continues to dispose of underperforming assets and focus on development," but that its shares are still rated a Sell. "Many of the company's Southeastern and Midwest markets still have high vacancies, which will make continued rent growth difficult," Zacks said. "In addition, the latest employment report was not encouraging, and we think this will get worse in the coming months." Zacks can be found online at http://www.zacks.com, and Highwoods can be found at http://www.highwoods.com.

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