The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Korn/Ferry International, Avis Budget Group, Regal Beloit, Amedisys and Jacobs Engineering Group

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL - July 10, 2018 - 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 Korn/Ferry International KFY , Avis Budget Group, Inc. CAR , Regal Beloit Corp. RBC , Amedisys Inc. AMED and Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. JEC .

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Here are highlights from Monday's Analyst Blog:

Profit from Strong Job Additions with These 5 Top-Ranked Picks

Job additions continued to be substantial in June, indicating that hiring remains robust even as the economy nears full employment. However, the unemployment rate inched up. But this was due to an increase in the labor force participation rate with several individuals looking to rejoin the workforce. The only worrying sign was the sluggish pace of wage growth, which came in below expectations.

June's jobs report indicates that corporations are successfully filling up open positions even as the pool of skilled workers continues to shrink. Professional and business services led job gains, followed by manufacturing, healthcare and construction. With job gains likely to continue in the coming months, picking stocks from these sectors looks like a prudent option at this point.

Rise in Labor Force Participation Boost Unemployment

Though job additions remained robust in June, the unemployment rate increased from an 18-year low of 3.8% to 4%. However, the increase in the unemployment rate was largely attributable to a rise in the labor force participation rate.

This metric increased by 0.2 percentage points to 62.9% even as 601,000 individuals chose to rejoin the labor force. The increase in labor force participation is particularly notable, since it comes after three consecutive monthly declines.

Meanwhile, average hourly earnings increased by 0.2%, or 5 cents to $26.98 an hour. Consequently, the yearly increase in wages remained unchanged at 2.7% in June. One factor impeding the growth in wages was a fall in full-time positions by 89,000.

Professional Services, Manufacturing, Healthcare Lead Gains

The economy added 213,000 jobs in June, exceeding the consensus estimate of 196,000. Economists had predicted that gains would decline to around half this number as the economy nears full employment. Notably, monthly job additions have averaged 200,000 over the past one year. Job additions for April and May were revised upward by a combined 37,000.

At the forefront of job gains were manufacturing, healthcare and construction, which added 36,000, 25,000 and 13,000 jobs, respectively. However, leading the pack was professional and business services with 50,000 new jobs. The sector has added 521,000 jobs in the past 12 months.

Our Choices

Job additions in June remained robust despite economists claiming that they would slow as the economy nears full employment. Though the unemployment rate increased, this was largely attributable to an increase in the labor participation rate. As individuals choose to rejoin the workforce, corporations will find it easier to fill up positions even as the skilled labor pool continues to shrink.

Professional and business services, manufacturing, healthcare and construction have been the highest recruiters according to the June jobs report. Adding stocks from these sectors looks like a smart choice at this point. However, picking winning stocks may be difficult.

This is where our VGM Score comes in. Here V stands for Value, G for Growth and M for Momentum and the score is a weighted combination of these three scores. Such a score allows you to eliminate the negative aspects of stocks and select winners. However, it is important to keep in mind that each Style Score will carry a different weight while arriving at a VGM Score. 

We have narrowed down our search to the following stocks, each of which has a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and VGM Score of B. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Korn/Ferry International is the world's leading and largest executive recruitment firm with the broadest global presence in the executive recruitment industry.

Korn/Ferry's projected growth rate for the current year is 18.4%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the current year has improved 5.5% over the last 30 days.

Avis Budget Group, Inc.  provides vehicle rental services through a network of approximately 10,000 car and truck rental locations.

Avis Budget Group's projected growth rate for the current year is 24.4%.

Regal Beloit Corp.  is a leading manufacturer of electrical and mechanical motion control products.

Regal Beloit's projected growth rate for the current year is 20.8%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the current year has improved 0.9% over the last 60 days.

Amedisys Inc.  provides home health and hospice services throughout the United States to the growing chronic, co-morbid, and aging American population.

Amedisys' projected growth rate for the current year is 41.5%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the current year has improved 0.4% over the last 30 days.

Jacobs Engineering Group Inc.  is one of the leading providers of professional, technical and construction services to industrial, commercial and governmental clients.

Jacobs Engineering Group's projected growth rate for the current year is 31.5%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the current year has improved 0.1% over the last 30 days.

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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.

Strong Stocks that Should Be in the News

Many are little publicized and fly under the Wall Street radar. They're virtually unknown to the general public. Yet today's 220 Zacks Rank #1 "Strong Buys" were generated by the stock-picking system that has nearly tripled the market from 1988 through 2015. Its average gain has been a stellar +26% per year.  See these high-potential stocks free >>.

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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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Avis Budget Group, Inc. (CAR): Free Stock Analysis Report

Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (JEC): Free Stock Analysis Report

Regal Beloit Corporation (RBC): Free Stock Analysis Report

Amedisys, Inc. (AMED): Free Stock Analysis Report

Korn/Ferry International (KFY): Free Stock Analysis Report

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Zacks Investment Research

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing , Stocks
Referenced Symbols: CAR , JEC , RBC , AMED , KFY

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