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Here's Why You Should Buy Morgan Stanley (MS) Stock Now

Zacks Equity Research

It seems to be a wise idea to invest in the major global investment bank, Morgan Stanley MS stock now. The company is well poised for revenue growth, driven by normalized levels of trading activities, relatively higher interest rates and focus on improving corporate lending business. Moreover, its solid balance-sheet position bodes well for the future.

Further, analysts are bullish on the stock. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the company’s earnings has been revised 4.5% and 1.1% upward, over the past 60 days, for 2019 and 2020, respectively. As a result, the stock currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

The company’s price performance seems impressive as well. So far this year, the stock has rallied 9.1%, outperforming the industry’s rise of 6.5%.



Here are the factors that make Morgan Stanley an attractive investment option right now.

Earnings strength: Morgan Stanley’s earnings have grown at arate of 18.1%, over the last three to five years, higher than the industry average of 14.7%. This momentum is expected to continue in the near term as evident by its projected EPS growth rate of 6.7% and 8.5% for 2019 and 2020, respectively.

In addition, the company’s long-term projected earnings growth rate of 9% promises reward for shareholders.

Moreover, Morgan Stanley has an impressive earnings surprise history. Its earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the trailing four quarters, the average beat being 8%.

Revenue growth: Morgan Stanley’s organic growth remains strong. Revenues witnessed a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4%, over the last five years (2014-2018). Driven by a steady focus on wealth management operations (acquisition of Solium Capital), higher interest income and trading activities will boost revenues.

Impressive capital deployment: Morgan Stanley’s capital-deployment plan is commendable. Its 2018 capital plan included a 20% dividend hike and $4.7-billion share-repurchase authorization. Given its solid liquidity position and earnings strength, the company is likely to be able to sustain this level of capital deployments.

Stock looks undervalued: Morgan Stanley looks undervalued with respect to its price-to-earnings (P/E) and price-to-book (P/B) ratios. The company’s P/E (F1) and P/B ratios of 8.80 and 0.98, respectively, are below the industry averages of 11.22 and 1.84.

Also, the stock has a Value Score of A. The Value Style Score condenses all valuation metrics into one actionable score that helps investors steer clear of ‘value traps’ and identify stocks that are truly trading at a discount.

Other Stocks to Consider

JMP Group LLC JMP has witnessed an upward earnings estimate revision of 3% for the current year, over the past 60 days. Also, its share price has rallied 4.9%,over the past month. The stock sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Stifel Financial Corporation’s SF earnings estimates have been revised 2.9% upward for the current year in the past 60 days. Over the past month, this Zacks #1Ranked stock, has rallied 2%.

Evercore Inc EVR recorded an upward earnings estimate revision of 3.1% for the ongoing year in the past 60 days. Its share price has witnessed a 3.4% rise,over the past month. The stock carries a Zacks Rank #2, currently.

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