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Can Exelixis (EXEL) Run Higher on Rising Earnings Estimates?

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Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) closed at $498.64 in the latest trading session, marking a -0.95% move from the prior day.

Exelixis (EXEL) could be a solid choice for investors given the company's remarkably improving earnings outlook. While the stock has been a strong performer lately, this trend might continue since analysts are still raising their earnings estimates for the company.

The rising trend in estimate revisions, which is a result of growing analyst optimism on the earnings prospects of this drug developer, should get reflected in its stock price. After all, empirical research shows a strong correlation between trends in earnings estimate revisions and near-term stock price movements. Our stock rating tool -- the Zacks Rank -- has this insight at its core.

The five-grade Zacks Rank system, which ranges from a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) to a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell), has an impressive externally-audited track record of outperformance, with Zacks #1 Ranked stocks generating an average annual return of +25% since 2008.

For Exelixis, there has been strong agreement among the covering analysts in raising earnings estimates, which has helped push consensus estimates considerably higher for the next quarter and full year.

The chart below shows the evolution of forward 12-month Zacks Consensus EPS estimate:

12 Month EPS

Current-Quarter Estimate Revisions

The earnings estimate of $0.25 per share for the current quarter represents a change of +108.33% from the number reported a year ago.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Exelixis has increased 31.46% over the last 30 days, as four estimates have gone higher compared to no negative revisions.

Current-Year Estimate Revisions

For the full year, the earnings estimate of $1.30 per share represents a change of +154.9% from the year-ago number.

In terms of estimate revisions, the trend for the current year also appears quite encouraging for Exelixis. Over the past month, seven estimates have moved higher compared to no negative revisions, helping the consensus estimate increase 25.59%.

Favorable Zacks Rank

Thanks to promising estimate revisions, Exelixis currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The Zacks Rank is a tried-and-tested rating tool that helps investors effectively harness the power of earnings estimate revisions and make the right investment decision. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Our research shows that stocks with Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and 2 (Buy) significantly outperform the S&P 500.

Bottom Line

Investors have been betting on Exelixis because of its solid estimate revisions, as evident from the stock's 6.7% gain over the past four weeks. As its earnings growth prospects might push the stock higher, you may consider adding it to your portfolio right away.


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