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Top Analyst Reports for Goldman Sachs, Abbott & Altria

Mark Vickery
Top Analyst Reports for Goldman Sachs, Abbott & Altria

Friday, April 20, 2018

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 Goldman Sachs (GS), Abbott Labs (ABT) and Altria (MO). 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 >>>

Strong Buy-ranked Goldman Sachs’ shares have gained +5% in the past six months, underperforming the +13.1% gain of the Zacks Investment Banking industry. However, the company boasts an impressive earnings surprise history. It surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in all the trailing four quarters.

The company’s first-quarter 2018 results witnessed top-line strength. Strong trading activities on high volatility supported the bottom-line numbers. Though regulatory issues are concerns, the Zacks analyst thinks the company’s well-diversified business and focus to capitalize on growth opportunities through strategic moves will continue to strengthen the overall business.

Its cost-control measures are commendable. Additionally, the company’s steady capital-deployment activities have boosted investors' confidence.

(You can read the full research report on Goldman Sachs here >>>).

Shares of Buy-ranked Abbott Labs have gained +6.8% over the last six months, outperforming the Zacks Medical Products industry, which has gained +2.8% over the same period. Post a better-than-expected result by Abbott in the first quarter 2018; the Zacks analyst is upbeat about the strong and consistent EPD and Medical Devices performance by the company. Also, solid contributions from Diagnostics and Nutrition business are encouraging.

Within Structural Heart, strong uptake of MitraClip therapy post the national reimbursement approval in Japan also buoys optimism. Abbott continues to benefit from a strong integration synergy of St. Jude Medical. Abbott’s Alere buyout is another positive. Synergies from this consolidation in the form of revenues from Rapid Diagnostics have been driving the company’s growth.

Meanwhile, the company’s emerging market performance has been extremely promising on several strategic developments. On the flip side, sluggish pediatric vascular business in the United States continues to dent growth.

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

Altria’s shares have outperformed the Zacks Tobacco industry in the last three months (-18.9% vs. -21.8%), aided by expansion in the smokeless products category. Rising health consciousness and stern government regulations to curb tobacco consumption has been hurting cigarette volumes and denting Altria’s top line for quite some time. Also, the likelihood of these concerns lingering is evident from investors' bearish stance on the stock. Moreover, Altria's Wine category remains sluggish due to stiff competition.

Nevertheless, Altria has been progressing well with expansion in the smokeless products category. This fueled its smokeless product revenue in fourth-quarter 2017, wherein earnings kept its stellar year-over-year growth trend intact. Results were backed by solid pricing, higher OCI and lower tax rates.

Investments in key growth areas, efforts to lift Marlboro’s share and expected gains from tax reforms led to a robust earnings view. However, estimates have dropped lately ahead of Altria's earnings release.

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

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include PayPal (PYPL), Kinder Morgan (KMI) and Progressive Corp (PGR).

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Mark Vickery

Senior Editor

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

Prudent Cost Control & Diversification Supports Goldman (GS)

Abbott (ABT) EPD Gains in Emerging Space on Branded Generics

Soft Cigarette Volumes Mar Altria (MO), Smokeless Unit Solid

Featured Reports

Alkermes (ALKS) Boasts Strong Pipeline amid Stiff Competition

Per the Zacks analyst, Alkermes' strong product portfolio and pipeline progress have been impressive amidst stiff competition.

Kinder Morgan (KMI) Grows on Fee-Based Contracts, Debt High

Kinder Morgan generates majority of its cash flow from stable fee-based contracts. However, the Zacks Analyst believes that weak balance and Trans Mountain Expansion Project is an overhang.

Intermodal Unit Buoys J.B. Hunt (JBHT) Amid High Costs

The Zacks analyst likes the company's efforts to reward shareholders. Robust intermodal revenues are encouraging too.

Growth in Steel Demand to Aid Companhia Siderurgica (SID)

Per a Zacks analyst, Companhia Siderurgica Nacional is poised to gain in 2018 from 1.8% hike in global steel demand and strengthening automotive, construction and capital goods sector of Brazil.

Revenue Growth Aids Acadia Healthcare (ACHC), High Debt Ails

Per the Zacks analyst, the company's revenue has increased from past many years led by organic & inorganic growth.

Investments and Growth Projects Aid CenterPoint Energy (CNP)

Per the Zacks analyst, CenterPoint Energy's robust investment plans through 2018-2022 should enable the company to achieve its targets.

Increasing Premiums Continue to Aid Progressive (PGR)

Per the Zacks analyst, competitive market rates and a compelling multi-product portfolio will continue to fuel premium growth for Progressive.

New Upgrades

Electronic Brokerage Focus Aids Interactive Brokers (IBKR)

The Zacks analyst believes that Interactive Brokers' increased focus on strengthening Electronic Brokerage segment and restructuring efforts will go a long way in supporting its profitability.

GEAR Up Initiatives Support Comerica's (CMA) Financials

Per the Zacks analyst, Comerica's focus on driving long-term efficiency through GEAR Up initiatives is encouraging. Also, rising interest rates and lower tax rates will further support its financials.

Revenue Growth & Diversification Aids Northern Trust (NTRS)

Per the Zacks analyst, focus on initiating new business against the backdrop of macroeconomic headwinds should bolster Northern Trust's revenues. Moreover, its diversified products are a tailwind.

New Downgrades

Margin Impact of EFCO Acquisition & Tariffs Ail Apogee (APOG)

Per the Zacks analyst, Apogee's results will be hurt by lower margins from EFCO acquisition. Further, recent tariffs on aluminum and steel prices remain a headwind for the company.

Rising Raw Material & Labor Costs Mar NVR's (NVR) Prospects

Rising raw material costs as well as labor costs may dampen NVR's growth prospects. Again, high mortgage rates may dilute the demand for new homes, per the Zacks analyst.

PayPal (PYPL) Hurt By eBay Partnership Discontinuation

Per the Zacks analyst, PayPal's revenue is likely to hurt by eBay's selection of Adyen as its new primary payment processor and ending its long term partnership with PayPal.

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PayPal Holdings, Inc. (PYPL) : Free Stock Analysis Report
The Progressive Corporation (PGR) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Altria Group, Inc. (MO) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Kinder Morgan, Inc. (KMI) : Free Stock Analysis Report
The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Abbott Laboratories (ABT) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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