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Ball Corp (BLL) Hits 52-Week High: Is Further Upside Left?

Zacks Equity Research

Shares of Ball Corporation BLL scaled a fresh 52-week high of $79.46 during trading session on Aug 13, before closing a little lower at $79.29. The company has a market cap of $25.52 billion.

Over the last three months, its average volume of shares traded has been approximately 2.04M. The company has an expected long-term earnings per share growth rate of 5.50%.

Notably, the stock has soared 99.4% in a year’s time, higher than the S&P 500’s rally of 4.7%. Additionally, Ball Corporation has outperformed 70.9% growth recorded by the industry.

Driving Factors

The company expects to achieve EBITDA of $2 billion and free cash flow of more than $1 billion in 2019, backed by continued solid demand for aluminum packaging and robust aerospace backlog. The Aerospace business is poised to witness revenue growth of nearly 25% this year. With contracted backlog levels and won-not-booked backlog of $4.8 billion at the end of the second quarter, the future looks bright for aerospace for the next three to five years.
In 2019 and beyond, the company anticipates earnings per share to be up 10-15%. Additionally, overall global beverage can demand continues to grow as customers are now preferring cans over glass and plastic.

Ball Corporation’s North and Central American segment is likely to benefit from fixed cost savings, volume growth, improved aluminum can-sheet quality and reduce start-up costs in 2019 and beyond. The South America segment is strongly positioned for improved results in the current year as industry beverage can demand in South America, particularly in Brazil, remains solid. Beer customers are shifting from glass packaging to aluminum cans, and overall consumption of alcohol and non-alcoholic products are on the rise.

Furthermore, Europe segment will also gain on customers’ growing preference for cans and increased production in new lines in the company’s existing facilities.

The company continues to execute its strategies of achieving better value for standard products and higher growth for specialty products. Ball Corporation’s focus on pursuing cost-out programs, completing growth capital projects and commercializing on the inherent sustainability attributes of metal packaging, will benefit the company in the days ahead.

Positive Growth Projections

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Ball Corporation’s current-year earnings per share currently stands at $2.59, indicating growth of 17.7% from the year-ago quarter. The same for 2020 is pegged at $3.06, suggesting an improvement of 18.4% from the year-ago reported tally.

Ball Corporation Price and Consensus

Ball Corporation Price and Consensus
Ball Corporation Price and Consensus

Ball Corporation price-consensus-chart | Ball Corporation Quote

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Ball Corporation currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

A few better-ranked stocks in the Industrial Products sector are Unifirst Corporation UNF, Albany International Corporation AIN and Cintas Corporation CTAS. While Unifirst flaunts a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Albany International and Cintas carries a Zacks Rank of 2 (Buy), at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Unifirst has a projected earnings growth rate of 15.17% for the current year. The stock has gained 9.9% in a year’s time.

Albany International has an estimated earnings growth rate of 32.3% for 2019. The company’s shares have rallied 8% in the past year.

Cintas Corporation has an expected earnings growth rate of 11.15% for the ongoing year. The stock has appreciated 27.4% over the past year.

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