The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Big 5 Sporting Goods, Wyndham Worldwide, Marriott International, Home Inns & Hotels Management and Choice Hotels International



For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – March 28, 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 Big 5 Sporting Goods Corp. (BGFV), Wyndham Worldwide Corporation (WYN), Marriott International Inc. (MAR), Home Inns & Hotels Management Inc. (HMIN) and Choice Hotels International Inc. (CHH).

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Here are highlights from Wednesday’s Analyst Blog:

Big 5 Retains Outperform Rec


We have maintained our long-term Outperform recommendation on Big 5 Sporting Goods Corp. (BGFV) based on the company’s better-than-expected quarterly results for the third consecutive quarter.

Why Reiterate?

Big 5 Sporting has surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in 3 of the trailing 4 quarters in the range of negative 66.7% to positive 50.0%. The average surprise over the last 4 quarters remained positive at 2.7%.

Driven by strong top-line performance along with effective cost management, Big 5 Sporting’s earnings for fourth-quarter 2012 jumped nearly four-fold to 19 cents per share against 5 cents reported in the comparable year-ago quarter, and came a penny ahead of  the Zacks Consensus Estimate. The company’s sales grew 7.4% year over year to $243.6 million and surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $242.0 million.

Big 5 Sporting now anticipates earnings per share in the range of 18 cents to 24 cents per share in first-quarter 2013 compared with a penny recorded in the first quarter of 2012. Further, in anticipation of favorable weather conditions and higher demand for firearms and ammunition products, management expects same-store sales in first-quarter 2013 to grow in the high-single-digit range.

Following strong quarterly performance for the fourth quarter and a robust outlook, the Zacks Consensus Estimates have been showing an upward trend. For fiscal 2012 and 2013, the Zacks Consensus Estimate was raised by 17 cents and 9 cents to $1.07 and $1.23 per share in the last 30 days, respectively.


Wyndham, Margaritaville in JV


Wyndham Worldwide Corporation's (WYN) operational arm Wyndham Vacation Ownership (:WVO) in association with Margaritaville Hospitality Group is on the verge of reconstructing Grand Beach Palace Resort, in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. Positioned at the northeast of St. Thomas, the 25-acre resort is strategically located near the beach.

The redeveloped resort, Wyndham St. Thomas will be the first Margaritaville Vacation Club branded property. In order to restore the property, Wyndham has taken a refurbishment initiative, which is scheduled to start this summer. Primarily, the resort’s 290 guest rooms will be converted into 262 condominium units. Subsequently, the resort will undergo a complete renovation within a period of three years.

Wyndham St. Thomas is slated to open for business in 2014. With the completion of the restoration, the resort is likely to generate new employment opportunities in the region. 

However, to tap the growing potential, Marriott International Inc. (MAR) is also developing its vacation ownership timeshare business in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands through its Marriot Vacation Club.

Wyndham’s Vacation Ownership segment develops, markets, and sells vacation ownership interests to individual consumers, provides consumer financing in connection with the sale of VOIs, and offers property management services at resorts.

Wyndham derives a substantial chunk of revenues from its vacation ownership or timeshare business, which has solid long-term potential. Revenues from the Vacation Ownership segment at Wyndham rose 12.0% to $590.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2012.

Wyndham carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some players in the same industry, which are going to perform well, moving ahead, include Home Inns & Hotels Management Inc. (HMIN), and Choice Hotels International Inc.(CHH). Home Inns & Hotels Management carries a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) while Choice Hotels has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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Read the analyst report on BGFV

Read the analyst report on WYN

Read the analyst report on MAR

Read the analyst report on HMIN

Read the analyst report on CHH

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