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Top Stock Reports for Apple, Comcast & Nike

Mark Vickery

Friday, September 27, 2019

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 (AAPL), Comcast (CMCSA) and Nike (NKE). 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’s shares have outperformed the broader S&P 500 Index in the past six months (-16.5% vs. 6.1%). The Zacks analyst believes that the company’s focus on strengthening the Services business and a strong slate of upcoming app releases, including its streaming service Apple TV+, are key catalysts.

The company is also expected to benefit from the launch of latest iPhones, refreshed Macbook, iPad and Apple Watch product lines. Apple Arcade is anticipated to boost the company’s footprint in the video game space. However, the ongoing U.S.-China trade war does not bode well for the company.

Further, legal woes have increased due to a lawsuit by customers related to App Store charges. The company has also been accused of unfair practices by Spotify. These are significant headwinds, at least for the near term.

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

Shares of Comcast have gained 6.2% in the past three months, outperforming the Zacks Cable Television industry’s rise of 2.2%. The Zacks analyst believes that the company is benefiting from solid growth in the number of residential and business services high-speed Internet customers.

The company’s strategy of providing high-speed Internet at an affordable cost is playing a key role in improving customer experience. This will continue to boost revenue per customer on a monthly basis and retention rate. Robust performance of NBC and Telemundo is noteworthy.

Additionally, Sky’s content strength is expected to drive subscriber base in Europe. Further, increase in digital video sales is a key catalyst. However, Comcast continues to lose video subscribers due to cord-cutting. Moreover, a high debt level is a headwind.

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

Nike’s shares have gained 24.3% year to date, outperforming the Zacks Shoes and Retail Apparel industry’s rise of 23.2% over the same period. The Zacks analyst believes that the company’s performance has been driven by a robust surprise trend stemming from the execution of Consumer Direct Offense, and strength in Wholesale and Nike Direct businesses.

First-quarter fiscal 2020 marked the 10th straight quarter of top-line beat for the company, with earnings beat in 29 of the last 30 quarters. Further, it expects results for fiscal 2020 to be driven by brand recognition, robust innovation pipeline, and positive response from Nike Direct and wholesale partners. However, higher SG&A expenses and tax rate, as well as adverse currency are headwinds.

The company expects SG&A expenses to increase in high single digits in second-quarter fiscal 2020. Further, the company is likely to witness prominent impact of the recently-enacted tariffs in the fiscal second quarter, which should partly mar gross margin.

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

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include SAP (SAP), Medtronic (MDT) and salesforce.com (CRM).

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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

Expanding Portfolio, Services Strength to Aid Apple (AAPL)

High Speed Internet Subscriber Gain Benefits Comcast (CMCSA)

Strong China Business Contributes to NIKE's (NKE) Growth

Featured Reports

SAP Rides on Cloud Initiatives & Growth in S/4HANA Platform

Per Zacks analyst, SAP's resilient Cloud and Software business, act as staple growth drivers.

Medtronic (MDT) Gains From Robust Performance Within RTG Arm

The Zacks analyst is bullish about the strong rollout of Medtronic's Mazor X Stealth navigated robotic system within the Restorative Therapies Group.

salesforce (CRM) Rides on Partnership Wins & Acquisitions

Per the Zacks analyst, salesforce's expanding partner ecosystem is contributing to business wins and boosting its presence globally.

Higher Freight Revenues Aid Canadian National (CNI), Costs Ail

The Zacks analyst is impressed by robust growth in Canadian National's freight revenues on the back of rising demand.

TC Energy's (TRP) C$32B Growth Projects to Boost Earnings

The Zacks analyst believes that TC Energy's C$32 billion of growth projects should support its earnings and dividend payouts.

Investments Aids Eversource (ES) Amid Northern Pass Loss

Per the Zacks analyst Eversource's $12.75B investment in 2019-2023 time frame to strengthen its operation will assist it to overcome loss incurred due to discontinuation of Northern Pass project.

Strength at Distribution Channels Aid Globe Life (GL)

Per the Zacks analyst, Globe Life is set to grow on niche market focus, superior performance at Global Life and American Income and increasing agent count.

New Upgrades

Growth Within the Personal Care Segment Aids Amedisys (AMED)

The Zacks analyst is bullish about Amedisys' expanding customer base within Personal Care through strategic buyouts like Bring Care Home and ETPCS. Aging U.S. population is another growth driver.

Passenger Revenues & Fleet Upgrade Buoy Allegiant (ALGT)

The Zacks analyst is impressed with solid passenger revenues (up 9% in first-half 2019) due to strong demand for air travel. Efforts to modernize its fleet are also encouraging.

Solid Prospects in Core Oncology Unit Favors Varian (VAR)

Varian has been gaining consistently from strength in its core Oncology segment. The Zacks Analyst is also optimistic about the company's growing foothold in China.

New Downgrades

Advance Auto (AAP) to be Hurt by Trade Tiff and High Capex

Per the Zacks analyst, growing U.S.-Sino trade tiff is weighing on auto parts manufacturers like Advance Auto Parts, Further, the firm's high capex program will also dent profits.

Higher SG&A Costs Weigh on Tractor Supply's (TSCO) Margins

Per the Zacks analyst, Tractor Supply is witnessing rise in SG&A expenses, which is hurting its operating margin.

Rising Cost Impact LendingTree's (TREE) Bottom-line Growth

Per the Zacks analyst, LendingTree's bottom-line remains under pressure due to persistent rise in expenses on account of investments in product development, and advertising-related costs.

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SAP SE (SAP) : Free Stock Analysis Report
NIKE, Inc. (NKE) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Medtronic PLC (MDT) : Free Stock Analysis Report
salesforce.com, inc. (CRM) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Comcast Corporation (CMCSA) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Apple Inc. (AAPL) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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