The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Walmart, Comcast, ConocoPhillips, PayPal and CSX

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL -January 16, 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: Walmart WMT , Comcast CMCSA , ConocoPhillips COP , PayPal PYPL and CSX Corporation CSX .

Here are highlights from Tuesday's Analyst Blog:

Top Research Reports for Walmart, Comcast and ConocoPhillips

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 Walmart, Comcast and ConocoPhillips. 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 >>>

Walmart 's shares have performed nearly in line with the Zacks Supermarkets industry over the past six months (+8.4% vs. +8.1%), due to its focus on strengthening e-commerce and store operations. These factors helped the company retain its sturdy comps trend in third-quarter fiscal 2019, wherein top and bottom lines improved year over year and the latter marked its third consecutive beat.

Notably, U.S. comps rose for the 17th straight time. Further, e-commerce sales surged, courtesy of strong Walmart.com and online grocery performances. These factors encouraged management to raise view. The Zacks analyst likes Walmart's efforts to improve its International unit by shifting focus to profitable countries.

However, the company's investment in Flipkart is expected to dent the bottom line. Such investment costs and a compelling pricing strategy have been hurting Walmart's gross margin for a while. Nevertheless, the Flipkart deal bodes well for the long term and should help the company stand firm against Amazon.

(You can  read the full research report on Walmart here >>> ).

Shares of Comcast have outperformed the Zacks Cable Television industry over the past year, losing -14.5% vs. -18.3%. The Zacks analyst thinks Comcast is benefiting from solid growth in residential high-speed Internet customers.

Advertising revenues are also expected to grow due to higher spending on political advertising. Comcast's strategy to market broadband-only packages to customers is likely to drive top-line growth. Further, expanding Wi-Fi coverage along with innovative xFi control features is improving customer experience.

Moreover, the company's Xfinity Mobile is now used by more than one million customers. Further, the Sky acquisition expands Comcast's international reach. Sky's content portfolio strength is a major growth driver.

Additionally, NBCUniversal's upcoming streaming service is a key catalyst. However, the company continues to lose voice and video subscribers due to cord-cutting and stiff competition. Additionally, high debt level is a headwind.

(You can  read the full research report on Comcast here >>> ).

ConocoPhillips ' shares are up +11.5% over the past year, outperforming the Zacks U.S. Integrated Oil industry, which has lost -9.2% over the same period. In terms of production and proved reserves, ConocoPhillips is the largest oil and gas exploration and production (E&P) player in the world.

Notably, there are significant opportunities for the upstream energy player in the Eagle Ford where it owns about 3,400 undrilled locations. The Zacks analyst thinks strong focus on two other prospective resources like Delaware basin and Bakken shale is likely to help ConocoPhillips achieve its target of more than 25% CAGR of production through 2017 to 2019.

However, rising production and operating costs are hurting the company's bottom line. Since a majority of ConocoPhillips' production comprises oil, the weak crude pricing scenario could hurt the company's operations.

(You can  read the full research report on ConocoPhillips here >>> ).

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include PayPal and CSX Corporation.

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

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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: CSX , PYPL , CMCSA , COP , WMT

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