The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: 3M,, Melco Crown Entertainment, Akorn and Northern Oil And Gas


For Immediate Release
Chicago, IL – November 06, 2013 – announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include the 3M Company (MMM-Free Report), Inc. (PCLN-Free Report), Melco Crown Entertainment Limited (MPEL-Free Report), Akorn Inc (AKRX-Free Report) and Northern Oil And Gas Inc (NOG-Free Report).
Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.

Here are highlights from Tuesday’s Analyst Blog:

3M Invests in Asia-Pacific Region

Diversified conglomerate 3M Company (MMM-Free Report) has recently made substantial investments in the Asia-Pacific region to support the film business with the scale-up of world-class manufacturing facilities in China and Singapore.

The renewable energy division of 3M offers a robust portfolio of new and existing products with combined expertise in coatings, film, tape, adhesive and optical technologies. In order to meet the increased market demand, 3M has expanded its global manufacturing capabilities for renewable energy division products on several occasions.

The two manufacturing facilities aim to cater to the growing demand of automotive, residential and commercial window films in the Asia-Pacific region. 3M continue to make substantial investments in research and development along with plant investments. The R&D facilities of 3M work closely with national laboratories to develop and refine its energy conservation and generation, along with sustainable technologies and platforms.

3M remains focused on inventing new products to maintain its competitive advantage worldwide. The company continues to invest in diverse product offerings and technological solutions to capitalize on emerging business propositions.

3M, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a diversified technology company with manufacturing operations spread over 70 countries. The company aims to deliver innovative security solutions to businesses and governments worldwide, thus maintaining the security of people and documents.
3M currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Buy).

Will Priceline (PCLN) Disappoint on Earnings? Inc. (PCLN-Free Report) is set to report third-quarter 2013 results on Nov 7. Last quarter, it posted a 0.56% positive surprise. Let’s see how things are shaping up for this announcement.
Growth Factors this Past Quarter

Priceline’s share gains in both domestic and international markets led to higher sales growth rates in the second quarter of 2013. Also, overall bookings were up 10.5% sequentially and 38.0% year over year, which indicated improving demand environment. Gross margins expanded in the quarter, driven by higher revenues and steady ADRs in the hotels business.

For the third quarter, Priceline expects revenues to increase 23%–30% year over year, with pro-forma earnings per share to come in at $15.30–$16.30. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the third quarter is pegged at $15.64.

Earnings Whispers?

Our proven model does not conclusively show that will beat earnings this quarter. This is because a stock needs to have both a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1, 2 or 3 for this to happen. This is not the case here as you will see below.

Zacks ESP:  Both the Most Accurate estimate and the Zacks Consensus Estimate stand at $15.64. Hence, the difference is 0.00%.

Zacks Rank:’s Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) when combined with a 0.0% ESP makes surprise prediction difficult.

We caution against stocks with a Zacks Ranks #4 and 5 (Sell-rated stocks) going into the earnings announcement, especially when the company is seeing negative estimate revisions momentum.

Other Stocks to Consider

Here are some other companies you may want to consider as our model shows they have the right combination of elements to post an earnings beat:

Melco Crown Entertainment Limited (MPEL-Free Report), with Earnings ESP of +6.45% and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

Akorn Inc (AKRX-Free Report), with Earnings ESP of +7.69% and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
Northern Oil And Gas Inc (NOG-Free Report), with Earnings ESP of +3.23% and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.

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