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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Apple, Microsoft, Intuit, Hewlett Packard and Cisco Systems

Zacks Equity Research
China's smartphone market weakness continues to hurt leading smartphone vendors, including Apple (AAPL) and Samsung.

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – March 27, 2019 – Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include: Apple AAPL, Microsoft MSFT,Intuit Inc. INTU, Hewlett Packard Enterprise HPE and Cisco Systems, Inc. CSCO.

Here are highlights from Tuesday’s Analyst Blog:

3 Tech Stocks for Dividend Investors to Buy Now

Tech stocks are likely to remain some of the most desirable on the market despite some recent volatility. But investors who want to be a part of the technology industry don’t just have to search for high-flying growth stocks. Instead, tech-minded investors can take a page out of the income investing book and focus on companies with solid dividends.

Finding a strong dividend-yielding tech stock might seem difficult, but investors should not feel too intimidated. For example, some of the biggest names in tech, Apple and Microsoft, both pay dividends. And dividend-focused investors can search for the best tech stocks by using the Zacks Stock Screener, which is a great one-stop screening tool for investors of all kinds.

By limiting our search to companies in our “Computer and Technology” sector with Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) or better rankings, we can ensure that we are finding the highest quality stocks to buy right now. Throw in your preferred dividend yield and you will find some of the best tech stocks for dividend investors to target.

With all that said, check out these three dividend-paying tech stocks to buy right now:

1. Intuit Inc.

Shares of Intuit have surged over 47% in the last 12 months to crush the Computer-Software-Services Market’s 8% average climb to help them sit near their all-time high of $260.71 per share. INTU offers a variety of financial services, geared toward taxes, small business money management, and personal finance. Intuit’s software-as-a-service products include QuickBooks and TurboTax and boast a total of roughly 50 million customers around the world. Going forward, Intuit’s SaaS model and cloud focus look poised to attract more clients and customers as both of these industries continue to boom.

Our current Zacks Consensus Estimate calls for INTU’s adjusted Q3 fiscal 2019 earnings to jump 11.6% to reach $5.38 per share on the back of 10.3% revenue growth. This growth is expected to continue for the full year, with its EPS projected to jump nearly 17% on 11.3% higher revenue. Intuit has also experienced a ton of positive earnings estimate revision activity recently, which helps it earn a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at the moment. On top of INTU’s impressive climb, the company raised its quarterly dividend to $0.47 per share this year, which marked a 21% boost to last year’s $0.39 per share.

2. Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Hewlett-Packard spun off Hewlett Packard Enterprise in the fall of 2015. HPE offers its business clients everything from management software to hybrid cloud solutions and has also expanded into hardware, software, and security solutions focused directly on the internet of things. Shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise have surged roughly 17% to start the year to outpace the S&P 500’s 12% climb and its industry’s average. Despite the climb, HPE stock still rests roughly 15% below its 52-week high, which could give the stock room to run.

Investors should also note that HPE currently sports “B” grades Momentum and Value in our Styles System and is trading at 9X forward 12-month Zacks Consensus EPS estimates right now. This represents a discount compared to its industry’s 14.9X average and its own two-year median of 11.6X. The firm’s positive earnings estimate revision activity helps it earn a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Furthermore, the company paid an annualized dividend of $0.45 per share, with an approximately 3% yield. Meanwhile, HPE is expected to see its adjusted Q2 fiscal 2019 earnings jump 5.9%. Peeking further ahead, the firm’s current full-year earnings are expected to pop 4.5%, with its EPS figure projected to climb 7.7% above our 2019 estimate next year.

3. Cisco Systems, Inc.         

Cisco Systems is a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at the moment and has a dividend yield of 2.5%. The historic networking and tech giant’s board declared a quarterly dividend of $0.35 per common share on February 13, payable to shareholders of record as of April 5—that will be payable on April 24. Cisco’s new quarterly dividend marked a 6% increase from the $0.33 per share the firm paid over the last year and a 20% improvement on a two-year stack. CSCO stock has also climbed over 23% to start the year, reaching new 52-week highs along the way.

Looking ahead, our Zacks Consensus Estimate calls for Cisco’s quarterly earnings to surge 16.7% to reach $0.77 per share on the back of 3.4% revenue growth. Plus, the company’s current full-year earnings are projected to climb 17.7%, with 10.3% bottom-line expansion expected in the following year. CSCO is also trading in line with industry’s average forward P/E at 18.1X and has seen a ton of positive earnings estimate revisions recently, with the largest amount coming in for fiscal 2019 and 2020.

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Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Inherent in any investment is the potential for loss. This material is being provided for informational purposes only and nothing herein constitutes investment, legal, accounting or tax advice, or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold a security. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. It should not be assumed that any investments in securities, companies, sectors or markets identified and described were or will be profitable. All information is current as of the date of herein and is subject to change without notice. Any views or opinions expressed may not reflect those of the firm as a whole. Zacks Investment Research does not engage in investment banking, market making or asset management activities of any securities. These returns are from hypothetical portfolios consisting of stocks with Zacks Rank = 1 that were rebalanced monthly with zero transaction costs. These are not the returns of actual portfolios of stocks. The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index. Visit https://www.zacks.com/performance for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.


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