For those looking to find strong Business Services stocks, it is prudent to search for companies in the group that are outperforming their peers. Has Harte-Hanks (HHS) been one of those stocks this year? By taking a look at the stock's year-to-date performance in comparison to its Business Services peers, we might be able to answer that question.
Harte-Hanks is a member of the Business Services sector. This group includes 334 individual stocks and currently holds a Zacks Sector Rank of #8. The Zacks Sector Rank considers 16 different sector groups. The average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the groups is measured, and the sectors are listed from best to worst.
The Zacks Rank is a successful stock-picking model that emphasizes earnings estimates and estimate revisions. The system highlights a number of different stocks that could be poised to outperform the broader market over the next one to three months. Harte-Hanks is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #1 (Strong Buy).
Within the past quarter, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for HHS' full-year earnings has moved 19.7% higher. This shows that analyst sentiment has improved and the company's earnings outlook is stronger.
Our latest available data shows that HHS has returned about 47.5% since the start of the calendar year. Meanwhile, stocks in the Business Services group have lost about 30.1% on average. This means that Harte-Hanks is performing better than its sector in terms of year-to-date returns.
Another stock in the Business Services sector, Republic Services (RSG), has outperformed the sector so far this year. The stock's year-to-date return is 2.2%.
In Republic Services' case, the consensus EPS estimate for the current year increased 2.3% over the past three months. The stock currently has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
Breaking things down more, Harte-Hanks is a member of the Advertising and Marketing industry, which includes 16 individual companies and currently sits at #136 in the Zacks Industry Rank. On average, stocks in this group have lost 31.7% this year, meaning that HHS is performing better in terms of year-to-date returns.
On the other hand, Republic Services belongs to the Waste Removal Services industry. This 16-stock industry is currently ranked #75. The industry has moved -7.2% year to date.
Harte-Hanks and Republic Services could continue their solid performance, so investors interested in Business Services stocks should continue to pay close attention to these stocks.
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