U.S. Markets closed

The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Sony, Microsoft, Electronic Arts, Activision Blizzard, International Game Technology and Zynga

Zacks Equity Research

For Immediate Release
Chicago, IL – June 27, 2014 – 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 the Sony Corp (SNE-Free Report), Microsoft (MSFT-Free Report), Electronic Arts (EA-Free Report), Activision Blizzard (ATVI-Free Report), International Game Technology (IGT-Free Report) and Zynga Inc (ZNGA-Free Report).
Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.

Here are highlights from Thursday’s Analyst Blog:

Video Game Stock Round-Up: Ubisoft and Sony Top May Sales

Post E3, investors’ attention turns to the monthly video-game sales data that provided some encouraging numbers. Sony Corp’s (SNE-Free Report) PlayStation 4 remained the top-selling console for the fifth consecutive month, outselling Microsoft’s (MSFT-Free Report) Xbox One. Ubisoft’s action-adventure game Watch Dogstopped the video-game sales list in May, per NPD data.

The game’s availability on five platforms — Microsoft’s Xbox One and Xbox 360, Windows PC and Sony’s PlayStation 4 and 3 — helped it to push April’s top gameTitanfall from Electronic Arts (EA-Free Report) to #8. April’s #2 game, Activision Blizzard’s (ATVI-Free ReportCall of Duty: Ghosts was relegated to #10.

Nintendo’s racing game Mario Kart 8 was #2 selling game, while MLB 14: The Showtook the #3 slot. Bethesda’s Wolfenstein: The New Order was #4 and Minecraft was #5. A number of game releases on new consoles drove software sales in the month, which soared 57.0% to $274.0 million.

Overall, video game retail sales jumped 52.0% from the year-ago month to $586.0 million, driven by continued strong hardware sales that surged 95.0% to $187.0 million. Strong demand for new consoles from Microsoft and Sony drove the hardware sales.

Video Game Market – Other Stories Now

Nintendo received an adverse ruling from a U.K. court in a patent infringement lawsuit filed by Philips. The court ruled that the Wii maker violated two patents related to hand gestures and motion but not the one related to modeling a body in a virtual environment.

Reportedly, operator of Italy’s state lottery GTECG SpA is inclined to acquire International Game Technology (IGT-Free Report). IGT also attracted preliminary bidding from Apollo Global Management LLC and Carlyle Group LP. Recently, IGT announced that it has hired Morgan Stanley to explore a possible sale. Read: IGT Looks to go Private, Hires Morgan Stanley

Activision’s well-known Toys-to-Life video game franchise, Skylanders is teaming up with General Mills, Immediate Media, IDW and Crayola. General Mills will launch an eight-week cereal program in North America featuring the popular franchise. Immediate Media will launch an official Skylanders magazine in the U.K. this fall, while IDW will create its first official comic book series on the franchise.

Boston Bruins’ forward, Patrice Bergeron, will feature in EA’s upcoming NHL 15cover, after he received the maximum votes beating Montreal Canadiens defenseman, P.K. Subban.

Social game-maker Zynga Inc (ZNGA-Free Report) lost Nasdaq compliance after two independent directors stepped down. By Jul 27, the company is required to submit a plan to Nasdaq outlining its initiative to regain compliance.  

Game News

  •  Gluu Mobile launched Kim Kardashian: Hollywood on the App Store and Google Play
  •  EA launched Plants vs Zombies Garden Warfare for PCs on origin and other retailers worldwide
  •  EA launched EA SPORTS UFC at retail for Xbox One and PS4
  •  R.B.I. Baseball released on Xbox One and PlayStation 4


Over the last 5 days, NetEase was the leading stock as it added about 1.37%. The biggest loser was EA, which lost over 1.43%. However, EA has been the biggest gainer in the last 6 months, with Activision a distant second.

EA’s strong game portfolio for next-generation consoles has been the primary growth factor for the stock. However, Zynga continued to lose during the period, primarily on intensifying competition, from the likes of King Digital, delisting threats and less-than-impressive product pipeline.

Stock Price Chart (as of 6.25.2014)
  Last 5 days Last 6 months
ATVI 0.80% 21.90%
EA -1.43% 54.25%
MSFT 0.68% 12.26%
NTES 1.37% 1.19%
SNE 1.08% -2.31%
TTWO 1.36% 21.09%
ZNGA -0.64% -23.83%

Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.

About Zacks Equity Research

Zacks Equity Research provides the best of quantitative and qualitative analysis to help investors know what stocks to buy and which to sell for the long-term.

Continuous coverage is provided for a universe of 1,150 publicly traded stocks. Our analysts are organized by industry which gives them keen insights to developments that affect company profits and stock performance. Recommendations and target prices are six-month time horizons.

Zacks "Profit from the Pros" e-mail newsletter provides highlights of the latest analysis from Zacks Equity Research. Subscribe to this free newsletter today.

About Zacks

Zacks.com is a property of Zacks Investment Research, Inc., which was formed in 1978. The later formation of the Zacks Rank, a proprietary stock picking system; continues to outperform the market by nearly a 3 to 1 margin. The best way to unlock the profitable stock recommendations and market insights of Zacks Investment Research is through our free daily email newsletter; Profit from the Pros.  In short, it's your steady flow of Profitable ideas GUARANTEED to be worth your time! Register for your free subscription to Profit from the Pros.
Get the full Report on SNE - FREE
Get the full Report on MSFT - FREE
Get the full Report on EA - FREE
Get the full Report on ATVI - FREE
Get the full Report on IGT - FREE
Get the full Report on ZNGA - FREE
 Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/zacksresearch

Join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/home.php#/pages/Zacks-Investment-Research/57553657748?ref=ts

Zacks Investment Research is under common control with affiliated entities (including a broker-dealer and an investment adviser), which may engage in transactions involving the foregoing securities for the clients of such affiliates.
Media Contact
Zacks Investment Research
800-767-3771 ext. 9339

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 http://www.zacks.com/performance for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

Read the analyst report on SNE

Read the analyst report on MSFT

Read the analyst report on EA

Read the analyst report on ATVI

Read the analyst report on IGT

Read the analyst report on ZNGA

Zacks Investment Research