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Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day Highlights: AMERISAFE, Scholastic, GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis and Sanofi

Zacks Equity Research

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – April 9, 2013 – Zacks Equity Research highlights AMERISAFE, Inc. (AMSF) as the Bull of the Day and Scholastic Corporation (SCHL ) as the Bear of the Day. In addition, Zacks Equity Research provides analysis on GlaxoSmithKline(GSK), Novartis AG (NVS) and Sanofi (SNY).

Full analysis of all these stocks is available at http://at.zacks.com/?id=2678.

Here is a synopsis of all five stocks:

Bull of the Day:

AMERISAFE, Inc. (AMSF) delivered strong fourth quarter results on February 27, driven by a big increase in net premiums earned. Earnings per share for the quarter beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 25%, prompting analysts to revise their estimates significantly higher for both 2013 and 2014.

It is a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stock.

Although shares of AMERISAFE have risen sharply since the Q4 beat, the valuation picture still looks reasonable, leaving the stock with plenty of room to run higher.

AMERISAFE is a specialty provider of hazardous workers' compensation insurance to small and mid-sized companies.

AMERISAFE delivered better-than-expected fourth quarter results on February 27. The company reported adjusted earnings per share of 49 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 10 cents. It was a whopping 53% increase over the same quarter in 2011.

Bear of the Day:

Earnings estimates have fallen sharply for Scholastic Corporation (SCHL ) following disappointing fiscal 2013 third quarter results and lower management guidance. It is a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) stock.

Although shares have sold off since the Q3 report making valuation look a bit more attractive, investors may want to hold off on this stock until earnings momentum improves.

Scholastic Corp is the world's largest publisher and distributor of children's books.

Scholastic Corp delivered disappointing results for the third quarter of its fiscal 2013 on March 21. The company reported a loss of -63 per share, which was well below the Zacks Consensus Estimate of -39 cents. It was also well below last year's loss of -32 cents.

Sales slid -19% to $380.5 million, missing the consensus of $384.0 million. It was the company's 3rd straight top-line miss. This quarter's decline was driven mostly by the "Children's Book Publishing & Distribution" segment, which saw sales plunge -30% due to a sharp drop in sales of The Hunger Games trilogy.

 Latest Posts on the Zacks Analyst Blog:

Glaxo Flu Vaccine Approved

GlaxoSmithKline(GSK) recently announced the receipt of marketing authorization for its four-strain seasonal influenza vaccine in Germany and the UK. The vaccine will be marketed as Influsplit Tetra in Germany and Fluarix Tetra in the UK.

The vaccine Influsplit Tetra/Fluarix Tetra helps in the prevention of influenza in adults and children (three years and older) caused by the two influenza A virus subtypes and the two influenza B virus types contained in the vaccine. In Europe, it is the first four-strain influenza vaccine to get approval. It is expected to be launched in the flu season of 2013/2014.

The vaccine gained US Food and Drug Administration (:FDA) approval in Dec 2012. The approval was based on three studies, namely, Fluarix-US-005, FLU-056 and Fluarix-062. Moreover, Glaxo is currently seeking approval in Australia, Switzerland and Taiwan. The market also has products like Novartis AG’s (NVS) Aggripal and Sanofi’s (SNY) Vaxigrip and Fluzone.

We note that Glaxo boasts of a strong vaccine portfolio which includes vaccines like Infanrix/Pediarix, Rotarix, Synflorix and Cervarix.

A few days back, Glaxo received a complete response letter (CRL) from the FDA for its influenza vaccine candidate, Q-Pan H5N1 (pandemic influenza A virus monovalent adjuvanted vaccine). The FDA issued the CRL due to an administrative issue. Glaxo noted in its press release that the issue has already been resolved and it is working with the FDA to gain approval.

Get the full analysis of all these stocks by going to http://at.zacks.com/?id=2649.

About the Bull and Bear of the Day

Every day, the analysts at Zacks Equity Research select two stocks that are likely to outperform (Bull) or underperform (Bear) the markets over the next 3-6 months.

About the Analyst Blog

Updated throughout every trading day, the Analyst Blog provides analysis from Zacks Equity Research about the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets.

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