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KeyBanc keeps Goodyear on 'Hold' for now

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KeyBanc Capital Markets is not changing its rating on Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.'s stock. It remains on "Hold."

"Conditions in the tire industry remain challenging as volumes in April were disappointing," says analyst Saul Ludwig, a managing director with KeyBanc. "The shutdown of production for extended periods by Chrysler -- Goodyear is its largest tire supplier -- and General Motors Corp. could lead to extended production shutdowns, possibly more than what has already been announced by Goodyear."

Ludwig says the impact of price-mix on Goodyear's stock price in the second quarter will be less favorable than previously expected. However, the benefit of lower raw material costs in the first half will be better than expected.

KeyBanc's per-share loss estimates for the first half will be offset by an expected increase in price performance in the second half. The net result remains a loss of  $.80 per share for the year. "We have low confidence in our 2009 estimated loss of $0.80," says Ludwig.

For 2010, a profit of $0.85 is still expected, he adds.

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