Friday, August 11, 2017
The Zacks Research Daily presents the best research output of our analyst team. Today's Research Daily features new research reports on 16 major stocks, including Disney (DIS), Amgen (AMGN) and Caterpillar (CAT). These research reports have been hand-picked from the roughly 70 reports published by our analyst team today.
Disney’s shares have underperformed the Zacks Media Conglomerates sector over the last three months, declining -7.6% vs. -3.5%, primarily due to ongoing concerns regarding ESPN’s future. Identical to its performances over the past few quarters, ESPN results disappointed in the third quarter yet again. Further, the stock came under pressure after the company reported mixed third-quarter fiscal 2017 results.
Earnings came in above expectations but revenues lagged the same for the fourth straight quarter. However, the Zacks analyst likes the company’s decision to terminate its distribution agreement with Netflix for subscription streaming and launch its own streaming services – one for Disney and Pixar brands and another for ESPN followers.
Further, in an effort to attract online viewers, Disney which had earlier acquired 33% stake BAMTech announced its intention to acquire another 42% stake in the firm. Moreover, its Movies and Parks & Resorts businesses look promising.
Amgen shares have outperformed the Zacks Biomedicals and Genetics industry year to date, gaining +15.7% vs. +5.6%. Amgen beat estimates on both earnings & sales in the second quarter. While Amgen slightly tightened the sales guidance, it raised the earnings outlook backed by strong profits in the first half. The Zacks analyst likes the performance of Amgen’s newer drugs – Prolia, Xgeva, Vectibix, Nplate and Sensipar.
Amgen is also progressing with its pipeline including biosimilar drugs. However, the company has some challenges in store, given the presence of biosimilar competition and slowdown in sales of mature drugs. Volume growth of new drugs may not be enough to offset the lost sales due to the decline in mature brands. Also the softness in Enbrel sales due to stiff competitive pressure is a key cause for concern. Meanwhile, uptake of Repatha has been slow due to payer restrictions.
Strong Buy-rated Caterpillar's shares have gained +22% year-to-date, outperforming the Zacks Construction and Mining industry which has increased +19.8% over the same period. Caterpillar’s top and bottom line both improved on a year-over-year basis in the second quarter and also beat expectations. Better-than-expected results in first-half 2017 can be attributed to its cost-control actions.
Backed by upbeat results and improved order activity, Caterpillar hiked revenue guidance to the range of $42–$44 billion and projects earnings per share of $5.00. The Zacks analyst thinks the Asia Pacific region will continue to be the catalyst in both Resource Industries as well as construction, owing to increased infrastructure and residential investment in China.
Also, leading indicators of U.S. construction signal robust conditions ahead that bodes well for Caterpillar. The company’s efforts to reduce costs will help boost margins.
Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include NextEra Energy (NEE), S&P Global (SPGI) and Emerson Electric (EMR).
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Note: Sheraz Mian heads the Zacks Equity Research department and is a well-regarded expert of aggregate earnings. He is frequently quoted in the print and electronic media and publishes the weekly Earnings Trends and Earnings Preview reports. If you want an email notification each time Sheraz publishes a new article, please click here>>>
Today's Must Read
The Zacks analyst believes NextEra Energy continues to gain from the improving Florida economy, which is boosting its customer base, and from new projects coming online at regular intervals.
Per the analyst, Emerson is enjoying robust demand in global HVAC and refrigeration markets, higher optimization projects and MRO activity, but margins are pressured due to acquisition-related costs.
Per the Zacks analyst, Liberty Interactive should benefit from the surge in online sales and buyout of HSN Inc., while its businesses remain susceptible to technological changes.
Per the Zacks Analyst, lower volume of financial services weigh on top line, strain margins and dent S&P Global's strategic portfolio restructuring efforts and continued focus on core businesses.
Per the Zacks analyst, growth in TD Ameritrade's trading volumes is expected to continue in the near term driven by improvement in equity markets.
The Zacks analyst likes the improving coal scenario and the strong performance of the grain franchise, which are aiding the company's overall volumes.
Per the Zacks analyst, focus on operational excellence programs such as Blue Ocean, Stern Drive and Spinnaker will continue to enhance Mettler-Toledo's supply chain and manufacturing efficiencies.
Per the Zacks analyst, being the largest pure play government IT service provider, CSRA is benefiting from its domain expertise. Moreover, its strong partner base is a key catalyst.
Per the Zacks analyst, Prothena's efforts on developing its pipeline are encouraging. The company's collaboration with Roche is a positive as it provides it with funds in the form of milestone payment
Per the Zacks analyst, Lowe's Maintenance Supply Headquarters buyout will strengthen relationship with Pro customers. Also, RONA's acquisition has been augmenting its position in the Canadian market.
Per the Zacks analyst, escalating R&D outlay related to ViaSat-2 launch is a formidable threat to ViaSat's margins. Also, persistent sluggishness in the Commercial Networks business raises concerns.
Per the Zacks analyst, soft volume trends significantly hurt Dean Foods' second-quarter 2017 results. Management cut its earnings view for 2017 as it expects these obstacles to linger throughout 2017.
Per the Zacks analyst, AECOM's top-line performance will continue to take a beating on account of low oil prices. Also, the Budget Control Act is resulting in project stalling, making matters worse.
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S&P Global Inc. (SPGI): Free Stock Analysis Report
NextEra Energy, Inc. (NEE): Free Stock Analysis Report
Emerson Electric Company (EMR): Free Stock Analysis Report
Walt Disney Company (The) (DIS): Free Stock Analysis Report
Caterpillar, Inc. (CAT): Free Stock Analysis Report
Amgen Inc. (AMGN): Free Stock Analysis Report
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