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Top Analyst Reports for UnitedHealth, Pfizer & IBM

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Sheraz Mian
·6 min read
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Wednesday, March 10, 2021

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 UnitedHealth Group (UNH), Pfizer (PFE) and International Business Machines (IBM). 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 >>>

UnitedHealth shares have outperformed the Zacks Medical Insurance industry over the past year (+26.7% vs. +17.2%). The Zacks analyst believes that the company remains well poised to gain from its government business, comprising both Medicaid and Medicare Advantage.

The company’s top line is bolstered by new deals, renewed agreements and expansion of service offerings. Its numerous acquisitions bode well for its inorganic growth profile. The company’s solid health services segment provides significant diversification benefits.

A sturdy balance sheet and consistent cash flow generation is another positive, which has resulted in a solid capital position. This has empowered the company to engage in share buybacks and dividend payments programs. However, it is witnessing a slowdown in international and commercial business.

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

Shares of Pfizer have lost -4.5% in the last six months against the Zacks Large-Cap Pharmaceuticals industry’s gain of +2.1%. The Zacks analyst believes that strong growth of key brands like Ibrance, Inlyta and Eliquis is likely to drive sales for the company.

Its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, developed in record time, is now approved for emergency use in several countries.  Pfizer boasts a sustainable pipeline with multiple late-stage pipeline programs that can drive growth.

However, currency headwinds and pricing pressure are key top-line headwinds. Meanwhile, its Upjohn unit was a cash rich business and its divestiture will reduce the company’s cash flow.

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

IBM shares have gained +1.5% over the past three months against the S&P 500’s gain of +6.2%. The Zacks analyst believes that the company is poised to gain from spin-off of legacy infrastructure services business as it focuses on its hybrid cloud strategy.

Strong patent portfolio and solid uptake of IBM’s cloud-based solutions, blockchain, security, and digital transformation offerings also bode well. Furthermore, synergies from Red Hat buyout are strengthening its competitive position in the hybrid cloud market.

Moreover, intense competition in the cloud computing market from Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure remains a major headwind. Additionally, higher current debt levels amid extensive restructuring activities are other concerns.

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

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Humana (HUM), Align Technology (ALGN) and Exelon (EXC).

5 Stocks Set to Double

Each was hand-picked by a Zacks expert as the #1 favorite stock to gain +100% or more in 2020. Each comes from a different sector and has unique qualities and catalysts that could fuel exceptional growth.

Most of the stocks in this report are flying under Wall Street radar, which provides a great opportunity to get in on the ground floor.

Today, See These 5 Potential Home Runs >>

Sheraz Mian

Director of Research

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

Strong Service and Benefit Business Aids UnitedHealth (UNH)

Key Brands & COVID-19 Vaccine to Drive Pfizer's (PFE) Sales

Solid Adoption of Cloud Solutions Aids IBM Amid High Debt

Featured Reports

Solid Medicare Business Aids Humana (HUM) Despite High Costs

Per the Zacks analyst, robust Medicare business has helped the company to expand its business, which, in turn, has led to top-line growth.

Align (ALGN) Rides on Strong Invisalign and iTero Sales

The Zacks analyst is bullish about robust global adoption of Invisalign Aligners and iTero scanners boosting the overall-top-line growth.

Cost Mangement & Regulated Investments Aid Exelon (EXC)

Per the Zacks analyst Exelon's cost management initiatives will have positive impact on margins and its planned $26.7B investments through 2024 will strengthen its operation.

Chipotle (CMG) Banks on Digital Initiatives, High Costs Ail

Per the Zacks analyst, Chipotle is likely to benefit from its redesigned online ordering site featuring online payment and meal customizations.

Strength in E-commerce Unit Aids Lululemon's (LULU) Top Line

Per the Zacks analyst, Lululemon's e-commerce has been gaining from BOPIS and ship-from-store facilities.

Cost Savings Strategy Aids Deutsche Bank (DB) Amid Low Rates

Per Zacks analyst, Deutsche Bank's cost-savings efforts to drive efficiency are encouraging and might neutralize impact of high legal costs, going forward.

Investments Aid Edison International (EIX), Rising Costs Ail

Per the Zacks analyst, systematic capital investment boosts Edison International's infrastructure and customer reliability. Yet, rising wildfire related charges are hurting its bottom line.

New Upgrades

ExxonMobil (XOM) to Gain Huge Cash Flows From Guyana Finds

The Zacks analyst believes that ExxonMobil's world-class oil discoveries at the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana will generate massive cash flows. Its emission-reduction plan is a welcome move.

Diverse Production Mix to Aid Canadian Natural (CNQ)

The Zacks analyst believes that Canadian Natural's diverse production mix of synthetic oil, heavy crude oil, natural gas and light crude oil facilitates long-term value and reduces risk profile.

Capacity Expansion, Higher Steel Prices Aid Nucor (NUE)

Per the Zacks analyst, the company should gain from its actions to boost production capacity through a number of growth projects.

New Downgrades

Production Outages, High Debt Level Ail Methanex (MEOH)

Per the Zacks analyst, Methanex's operations will get affected by production outages and idling of certain plants. Its high debt level is another concern.

eBay (EBAY) Suffers From Slowing Growth & Rising Competition

Per the Zacks analyst, eBay is witnessing slowdown in the growth rate as customers are shifting back to normal shopping habits.

Sluggish Store Traffic to Weigh on Signet's (SIG) Top Line

Per the Zacks analyst, soft traffic across brick-and-mortar fleet is likely to remain a drag for Signet. During the holiday season, same store sales for the company's physical stores were down 4.1%.

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
UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (UNH) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Pfizer Inc. (PFE) : Free Stock Analysis Report
International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Humana Inc. (HUM) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Exelon Corporation (EXC) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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