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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Merck, PayPal, Royal Dutch Shell, BlackRock and General Electric

Zacks Equity Research

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – May 7, 2020 – 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: Merck MRK, PayPal PYPL, Royal Dutch Shell RDS.A, BlackRock BLK and General Electric GE.

Here are highlights from Wednesday’s Analyst Blog:

Top Analyst Reports for Merck, PayPal & Royal Dutch Shell

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 Merck, PayPal and Royal Dutch Shell. 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 >>>

Merck’s shares have underperformed the Zacks Large Cap Pharmaceuticals industry over the past year (-0.2% vs. +11.1%). The Zacks analyst believes that drugs like Keytruda, Lynparza and Bridion are driving sales. Keytruda sales are gaining from continued uptake in lung cancer and increasing usage in other cancer indications.

Animal health and vaccine products remain core growth drivers. The potential separation into two companies makes strategic sense as the remaining Merck should be able to achieve higher profits than the combined company. 

However, Merck expects the COVID-related business disruptions to hurt sales in its Pharmaceuticals as well as Animal Health units in 2020. Meanwhile, generic competition for several drugs and rising competitive pressure, mainly on the diabetes franchise will continue to be overhangs on the top line.

Shares of PayPal have gained 27.2% over the past six months against the Zacks Internet Software industry’s rise of 18.9%. The Zacks analyst believes that robust mobile checkout services of One Touch are contributing to the company’s total payment volume growth. Growing momentum across core peer to peer is also aiding in acceleration of payment volume.

PayPal’s portfolio strength remains its key catalyst. Venmo’s improving monetization efforts and rising adoption rate across various platforms are aiding total active accounts. Additionally, the company is benefiting from well-performing core PayPal and Braintree. Positive contributions from Hyperwallet buyout are tailwinds.

However, eBay’s managed payments transition remains a concern. Moreover, declining eBay volume remains a headwind for the company’s TPV. Moreover, PayPal anticipates Honey and GoPay buyouts to limit earnings growth in 2020.

Royal Dutch Shell’s shares have lost 37.9% over the past three months against the Zacks International Integrated Oil industry’s fall of 30.3%. The Zacks analyst believes that the company's position as a key supplier of LNG should benefit its long-term cash flow growth on the back of attractive growth opportunities.

Royal Dutch Shell’s Q1 earnings beat was overshadowed by its historic dividend cut. While Europe's largest oil company surpassed profit expectations on higher LNG sales volumes, the commodity price collapse forced the supermajor to trim its payout for the first time since World War II.

Shell is also making solid progress toward the transition to a renewable energy-focused future. But there are worries over the company’s drop in upstream production and its poor reserve replacement ratio.  

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include BlackRock and General Electric.

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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/performancefor information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

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Merck Co Inc (MRK) : Free Stock Analysis Report
BlackRock Inc (BLK) : Free Stock Analysis Report
General Electric Company (GE) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDS.A) : Free Stock Analysis Report
PayPal Holdings Inc (PYPL) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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