Friday, March 29, 2019
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 Phillip Morris (PM), Bristol-Myers (BMY) and Walgreens Boots (WBA). 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 >>>
Phillip Morris ' shares have gained +6.7% in the past six months, outperforming the Zacks Tobacco industry's decline of -2.4%. The Zacks analyst thinks the company is gaining from its strong pricing strategies. In fact, favorable pricing has played an important role in boosting revenues for a while.
Also, this drove the company's performance in the fourth quarter of 2018, wherein it delivered the third and the fourth straight quarter of top- and bottom-line surprises, respectively. The company is also undertaking initiatives to strengthen RRPs, which are rapidly gaining market popularity. In fact, it has introduced new versions of IQOS to capture market share.
Additionally, the company provided a favorable view for 2019. However, Philip Morris is grappling with declines in total shipment volumes, stemming from weak cigarette sales. Stringent regulations on tobacco products have been marring cigarette industry volumes. Moreover, unfavorable currency movements are a viable threat.
(You can read the full research report on Phillip Morris here >> > ).
Shares of Bristol-Myers have underperformed the Zacks Large Cap Pharmaceuticals industry in the past six months, losing -22.9% vs. +2.1%. Bristol-Myers' blockbuster immuno-oncology drug, Opdivo continues to perform well. The Zacks analyst thinks the approval of the drug for first-line RCC and adjuvant melanoma has boosted sales. Label expansion of other drugs like Sprycel and Empliciti should further drive the company's performance.
In January, Bristol-Myers announced that it will acquire Celgene for an equity value of approximately $74 billion. While the acquisition will bolster the company's portfolio, it is being opposed by a few shareholders, who believe that the deal is overpriced, significantly increasing shareholders' risk.
Moreover, the company's voluntary withdrawal of the sBLA seeking approval of Opdivo+Yervoy as a treatment for first-line NSCLC with tumor mutational burden greater or equal to 10 mutations/megabase was disappointing, given the market potential.
(You can read the full research report on Bristol-Myers here >>> ).
Walgreens Boots ' shares have outperformed the Zacks Drug Stores industry over the past six months, losing -13.7% vs. -24.4%. The Zacks analyst thinks that within the Retail Pharmacy USA division, the company has been making solid progress with respect to boosting prescription volume. Walgreens Boots is launching a phase of transformational cost management to reduce margin pressure.
The company has been gaining from strategic tie-ups as well. Walgreens Boots' recent alliance with Microsoft to use the Azure platform is a welcome move. The company's deal with Alphabet's life sciences and healthcare segment, Verily is another positive. The company's decision to launch next-day prescription delivery service with FedEx provides further cause for optimism.
On the flip side, tough market conditions, particularly in retail, have been leading to sluggishness in Walgreens Boots' Retail Pharmacy International division. The ongoing generic drug inflation is hurting pharmacy margins as well.
(You can read the full research report on Walgreens Boots here >>> ).
Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Paychex (PAYX), Sirius XM (SIRI) and Total System Services (TSS).
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Note: Sheraz Mian heads the Zacks Equity Research department and is a well-regarded expert of aggregate earnings. He is frequently quoted in the print and electronic media and publishes the weekly Earnings Trendsand Earnings Previewreports. If you want an email notification each time Sheraz publishes a new article, please click here>>>
Today's Must Read
RRPs Boost Phillip Morris (PM), Low Cigarette Volumes Ail
Opdivo Drives Bristol-Myers' (BMY) Amid Pipeline Setbacks
Rite Aid Store Additions, Microsoft Deal Aid Walgreens (WBA)
Sanofi (SNY) Diabetes Unit Weak, New Drugs to Drive Growth
The Zacks analyst believes that Sanofi has many new products and pipeline candidates that can drive long-term growth. Weak diabetes sales and generic competition for many drugs are headwinds.
Content Strength, Pandora Acquisition Aids Sirius XM (SIRI)
Per the Zacks analyst, Sirius XM's solid content slate, which drives subscriber growth and average revenue per user (ARPU) is expected to improve further following the Pandora acquisition.
Product Backlogs Aid BorgWarner (BWA) Amid Market Concerns
Per the Zacks analyst, strong backlogs for innovative hybrid and electric propulsion engines helps BorgWarner to expand market presence.
KB Home (KBH) Banks on Strategic Initiatives, Costs High
Per the Zacks analyst, Returns-Focused Growth plan and Built-to-Order process bode well for KB Homes strong overall performance.
Catalyst Pharma (CPRX) Eyes Firdapse Label Expansion
Per the Zacks analyst, Catalyst remains focused on the development and label expansion of Firdapse amidst competition.
Focus on Debt Reduction Aids Natural Resource Partners (NRP)
Per the Zacks analyst, continuous focus on debt reduction and improving its liquidity position will strengthen Natural Resource Partners' financial position going forward.
Solid E-commerce Momentum to Bolster Hibbett's (HIBB) Sales
Per the Zacks analyst, Hibbett is poised to gain from improving e-commerce penetration.
Paychex (PAYX) Rides on Outsourcing, PEO Industry Strength
The Zacks analyst is impressed with Paychex's efforts to capitalize on the rising opportunities in the professional employer organization industry. Demand for outsourcing is another growth catalyst.
CommScope (COMM) Rides on Market Strength & Strategic Buyout
Per the Zacks analyst, CommScope aims to capitalize on industry trends, including network convergence and 5G on the back of its strong market position coupled with the proposed acquisition of ARRIS.
Rising Assets, Interest Rates Support Federated (FII)
Per the Zacks analyst, Federated's strategic acquisitions have resulted in asset growth and expansion in market share. Also, rise in interest rates will positively impact top-line performance.
High Financial Leverage Continues to Hurt Total System (TSS)
Per the Zacks analyst, the company's high debt level, which have been increasing over the past several years, continues to weigh on margins.
Pricing Pressure Hurts ResMed (RMD), Escalating Costs Ail
The Zacks analyst is worried about challenging pricing scenario that continues to plague ResMed. Reimbursement issues and rising costs are other downsides.
Soft Comps, High SG&A Costs Concerns for PriceSmart (PSMT)
Per the Zacks analyst, PriceSmart is grappling with soft comparable net merchandise sales for quite some time now. Moreover, higher SG&A expenses due to opening of new clubs are a strain on margins.
Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free reportWalgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (WBA): Free Stock Analysis ReportTotal System Services, Inc. (TSS): Free Stock Analysis ReportSirius XM Holdings Inc. (SIRI): Free Stock Analysis ReportPhilip Morris International Inc. (PM): Free Stock Analysis ReportPaychex, Inc. (PAYX): Free Stock Analysis ReportBristol-Myers Squibb Company (BMY): Free Stock Analysis ReportTo read this article on Zacks.com click here.Zacks Investment Research