The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Novartis, Zoom Video, Caterpillar, Microsoft, Cisco, Clorox and LHC Group

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – September 18, 2020 – 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: Novartis AG NVS, Zoom Video Communications, Inc. ZM, Caterpillar Inc. CAT, Microsoft Corporation MSFT, Cisco Systems, Inc. CSCO, The Clorox Company CLX and LHC Group, Inc. LHCG.

Here are highlights from Thursday’s Analyst Blog:

Top Stock Reports for Novartis, Zoom Video and Caterpillar

The Zacks Research Daily presents the best research output of our analyst team. Today's Research Daily features new research reports on 12 major stocks, including Novartis, Zoom Video Communications and Caterpillar. 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 >>>

Novartis shares have underperformed the Zacks Large-Cap Pharmaceuticals industry in the year to date period (-4% vs. +1.1%). But the Zacks analyst is optimistic about the company's outlook given solid performance of key drugs like Cosentyx and Entresto and new launches like Piqray, Mayzent and Beovu that should boost Novartis’ sales amid a slowdown due to the ongoing pandemic.

The biosimilar portfolio has also gained traction with new key approvals and is expected to drive growth. Novartis’ efforts to develop and diversify its pipeline are also impressive. However, price erosion in the United States has adversely impacted the generics business.

Moreover, pipeline setbacks and generic competition for key drugs are concerning. Shares have underperformed the industry in the past year. The company has tightened its outlook for 2020 due to the pandemic woes.

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

Zoom Video has emerged as one of the biggest beneficiaries of the pandmeic and the associated work-from-home environment. The company's execution has been flawless, as evident from its market share gains relative to bigger and better-capitalized competitors like Microsoft, Cisco and others.

The market has rewarded the stock accordingly, up +382.4% over the past year against the Zacks Internet Software industry’s rise of +57.7%. The Zacks analyst believes that Zoom Video should continue to gain traction from the coronavirus-induced remote-working and online-learning wave in second-quarter fiscal 2021.

The company added record number of subscribers. Enterprise customer base also grew rapidly. Easy to deploy, use, manage and solid scalability make Zoom Video’s software more popular among its customers. Moreover, the company’s expanding international presence is a key catalyst.

Its efforts to eliminate the security and privacy loopholes as well as new hardware and Zoom From Home solution’s launch are expected to help in expanding clientele. The company’s strong free cash-flow generating ability is noteworthy. However, acute competition from the likes of Microsoft and Cisco in the video-communication space does not bode well.

(You can read the full research report on Zoom Video here >>>)

Caterpillar shares have gained +50% over the past six months against the Zacks Construction and Mining industry’s rise of +48.2%. The Zacks analyst believes that the company’s results this year are likely to be impacted by a weak backlog and weakness in non-residential construction.

Caterpillar’s global retail sales fell 20% in August 2020, marking the ninth consecutive month of decline on weak demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Estimates for Caterpillar’s third quarter and current year have undergone negative revisions lately. However, the manufacturing sector seems to be coming out of the pandemic-induced crisis on gradual resumption of the global economic activities and reopening of businesses.

This will be a positive for Caterpillar. Further, the company’s focus on cost reduction will help boost margins. Strong liquidity position, investments in expanded offerings and services, and digital initiatives including e-commerce will fuel growth.

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

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Clorox and LHC Group.

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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 information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

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Microsoft Corporation (MSFT): Free Stock Analysis Report
Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO): Free Stock Analysis Report
Caterpillar Inc. (CAT): Free Stock Analysis Report
Novartis AG (NVS): Free Stock Analysis Report
The Clorox Company (CLX): Free Stock Analysis Report
LHC Group, Inc. (LHCG): Free Stock Analysis Report
Zoom Video Communications, Inc. (ZM): Free Stock Analysis Report
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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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