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Top Analyst Reports for Apple, Bank of America, Cisco & Others

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

The Zacks Research Daily presents the best research output of our analyst team. Today's Research Daily features new research reports on 16 major stocks, including Apple Inc. (AAPL), Bank of America Corporation (BAC) and Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO). These research reports have been hand-picked from the roughly 70 reports published by our analyst team today.

You can see all of today’s research reports here >>>

Apple shares have performed in-line with the Zacks Tech sector this year (+36.8% vs. +37.2%), but have handily outperformed the broader market (+36.8% vs. +17%). The company expects iPhone and Services’ year-over-year growth to accelerate in the fiscal fourth quarter compared with the June quarter.

The upcoming iPhone 15, which Apple is likely to announce on Sep 12, is a key catalyst. Although the iPhone 15 is not expected to feature any major improvements from iPhone 14, the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max are expected to feature an A17 Bionic chip, improved battery life and a USB-C charging port.

Apple is also benefiting from increasing customer engagement in the services segment. The expanding content portfolio of Apple TV+ and Apple Arcade is helping drive subscriber growth. However, revenues for both Mac and iPad are expected to decline double digits on a year-over-year basis in the fiscal fourth quarter due to difficult comparisons.

(You can read the full research report on Apple here >>>)

Shares of Bank of America have gained +1.8% over the past six months against the Zacks Banks - Major Regional industry’s gain of +5.6%. Higher interest rates and decent loan demand will likely keep aiding the company’s net interest income (NII) growth. The opening of financial centers and improving digital capabilities is expected to bolster the top line.

However, the tough economic backdrop is expected to keep weighing on investment banking (IB) business. This, along with the volatile nature of the capital markets, might hurt non-interest income. Moreover, inflationary pressure will likely result in mounting expenses.

(You can read the full research report on Bank of America here >>>)

Shares of Cisco have outperformed the Zacks Computer - Networking industry over the year-to-date period (+19.9% vs. +18.4%). The company is riding on the growing demand for its security, artificial intelligence and cloud products. Its security portfolio is benefiting from the launch of new data loss prevention, firewall and zero trust capabilities.

Zero Trust portfolio is riding on strong demand for its Duo offering. Optimized application experience is benefiting from strong demand for ThousandEyes. Its investments across security business, focusing on cloud-based and AI-driven offerings, is expected to drive growth.

Expanding growth opportunities for low-power-consuming technologies, including IoT, Silicon One and Power over Ethernet bodes well for Cisco. Acquisitions including Lightspin Technologies, Smartlook and Armorblox is expected to benefit top-line growth.

(You can read the full research report on Cisco here >>>)

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Illinois Tool Works Inc. (ITW), Fidelity National Information Services, Inc. (FIS) and HP Inc. (HPQ).

Director of Research

Sheraz Mian

Note: Sheraz Mian heads the Zacks Equity Research department and is a well-regarded expert of aggregate earnings. He is frequently quoted in the print and electronic media and publishes the weekly Earnings Trends and Earnings Preview reports. If you want an email notification each time Sheraz publishes a new article, please click here>>>

Today's Must Read

Robust Portfolio, Services Strength to Benefit Apple (AAPL)

Higher Rates Aid Bank of America (BAC) Amid Fee Income Woes

Cisco (CSCO) Benefits From Strong Security Products Adoption

Featured Reports

Automotive OEM Aids Illinois Tool (ITW), Construction Ails
Per the Zacks analyst, solid underlying demand and improving supply chains bode well for the Automotive OEM unit. However, weak U.S. residential construction is worrisome for the Construction unit.

Fidelity (FIS) Strategic Acquisitions Aid, Rising Costs Hurt
Per the Zacks analyst, multiple buyouts and technological investments are helping Fidelity National enhance its capabilities. However, increasing expenses remain a concern.

HP (HPQ) Hurt by Declining Demand, High Inventory Levels
Per the Zacks analyst, HP is hurt by declining demand for its consumer and commercial PCs. Also, high inventory levels at channel partners are leading to order delays.

Dividends, Buyback Aid J.B. Hunt (JBHT), Interest Expense High
The Zacks analyst is encouraged by the shareholder-friendly measures adopted by J.B. Hunt. However, higher net interest expense is likely to mar J.B. Hunt's bottom line.

APA Corporation (APA) to Gain from Suriname Portfolio
The Zacks analyst believes that APA's significant drilling success in Suriname points to significant cash flow potential but is worried about the oil explorer's high debt burden.

Zillow Group (ZG) Rides on Solid Engagement in Rental Platforms
Per the Zacks analyst, increasing sign-ups for multi-family properties, greater single-family listings and enhancement in Zillow's Rentals marketplace will likely boost Zillow Group's margins.

Beam's (BEAM) Pipeline Promising, Markets Competitive
Zacks Analyst is encouraged by Beam's pipeline progress of its gene-editing candidates - BEAM-101 and BEAM-201. However, this market faces stiff competition from other gene-editing therapy developers.

New Upgrades

Robust Installation Business Aids TopBuild (BLD) Performance
Per the Zacks analyst, TopBuild is benefiting from favorable mix of installation business and strategic acquisitions. Also, focus on operational efficiencies and cost control initiatives bode well.

MDC Rides on Solid New Order Growth & Build-To-Order Model
Per the Zacks analyst, high demand for new homes, given low supply of existing homes, aids MDC. Also, its Build-to-Order approach and land buyout strategies add to the growth.

G-III Apparel (GIII) to Benefit From Strong Product Demand
Per the Zacks analyst, the impressive performance of G-III Apparel's apparel business, fueled by strong demand across outerwear and dress categories, will continue to lend momentum to it.

New Downgrades

BioPharma Softness, Inflationary Costs Ail Bio-Rad (BIO)
The Zacks analyst is worried about Bio-Rad's Life Science segment affected by the weaker demand from BioPharma and continued soft sales in emerging biotech companies. Higher costs irk gross margin.

Poor Domestic Travel to Hit Hawaiian Electric's (HE) Results
Per the Zacks analyst, domestic travel is expected to weaken in late 2023, which may lead to lower domestic visitor arrival in Hawaii. This may hurt Hawaiian Electric's results.

Lower COVID Sales Hurt Thermo Fisher (TMO), Forex Woes Ail
Per Zacks analyst, Thermo Fisher is witnessing a continuous decline in COVID testing-related demand and is likely to continue at much lower levels in 2023. Foreign exchange woes remain a concern.

Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report

Bank of America Corporation (BAC) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Illinois Tool Works Inc. (ITW) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Apple Inc. (AAPL) : Free Stock Analysis Report

HP Inc. (HPQ) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Fidelity National Information Services, Inc. (FIS) : Free Stock Analysis Report

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Zacks Investment Research