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Zacks.com highlights: Dean Foods, Big Lots, AMC Entertainment Holdings, Commercial Metals and Delek US Holdings

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL - Oct 23, 2017 - Stocks in this week's article include: Dean Foods Company , Big Lots , AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. , Commercial Metals Company and Delek US Holdings, Inc .

Screen of the Week of Zacks Investment Research:

5 Broker-Favorite Stocks to Keep an Eye On

Proper guidance is often the difference between success and failure in life. The same holds true for the investing world as well. The need for proper guidance from brokers is all the more required now as the Q3 earnings season is underway and investors will target stocks that have the potential to surpass earnings expectations in the current reporting cycle. This is because an earnings beat generally leads to stock price appreciation.

The task of designing one's portfolio with outperformers is by no means an easy one. This is because, a deluge of stocks flood the market at any given point in time. In the absence of proper guidance, identifying a winning stock is akin to searching for 'a needle in a haystack', for an investor. Proper guidance, in this respect, comes from brokers, who are deemed experts, equipped with vast knowledge and know how as far the field of investing is concerned.

Of the three types of brokers/analysts (sell-side, buy-side and independent) present in the investment world, sell-side analysts are most common. Various brokerage firms employ them to provide unbiased opinion to investors after thorough research. Buy-side analysts are employed by hedge funds, mutual funds etc. while the independent ones simply sell their reports to investors.

Be Guided by Broker Advice

Brokers, not only scrutinize the publicly available financial documents, but also attend company conference calls and other presentations. Naturally, it is in the best interest of investors to pay heed to such well-researched information as they aim to generate maximum returns from their portfolio. The estimate revisions serve as an important pointer regarding the price of a stock. In fact, a rating upgrade normally leads to stock price appreciation and vice versa.

One of the well-accepted investment strategies is to maintain a diversified portfolio to generate handsome returns irrespective of the market conditions. For instance, in the face of extremely low oil prices , analysts adopt a bullish stance on airline stocks and consequently raise estimates. Naturally, adding such stocks to one's portfolio in such a scenario might prove to be a winning strategy. Similarly, analysts might trim estimates and downgrade a stock following adverse events like lackluster earnings or pipeline failure (for a biotech player). Unsurprisingly, investors look to offload such stocks from their portfolio on the basis of broker advice.

To take care of the earnings performance, we have designed a screen based on improving analyst recommendation and upward estimate revisions over the last four weeks. Also, since the price/sales ratio is a strong complementary valuation metric in the presence of analyst information, it has also been included. The price/sales ratio takes care of the company's top line, thereby making the strategy foolproof.

Screening Criteria

# (Up- Down Rating)/ Total (4 weeks) =Top #75 : This gives the list of top 75 companies that have witnessed net upgrades over the last 4 weeks.

% change in Q (1) est. (4 weeks) = Top #10 : This gives the top 10 stocks that have witnessed earnings estimate revisions over the past 4 weeks for the upcoming quarter.

To ensure that the strategy is a winning one, covering all bases, we have added the following screening parameters:

Price-to-Sales = Bot%10 : The lower the ratio the better. Companies meeting this criterion are in bottom 10% of our universe of over 7,700 stocks with respect to this ratio.

Price greater than 5 : A stock trading below $5 will not likely create significant interest for most investors.

Average Daily Volume greater than 100,000 shares over the last 20 trading days : Volume has to be significant to ensure that these are easily traded.

Market value ($ mil) = Top #3000 : This gives us stocks that are the top 3000 if one judges by market capitalization.

Com/ADR/Canadian= Com : This takes out the ADR and Canadian stocks.

Here are five of the 10 stocks that made it through the screen:

Dean Foods Company , based in Dallas, TX, is a leading processor and distributor of milk and other dairy products in the United States as well as a leading manufacturer of various specialty food products. This Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company has a healthy 7% expected EPS growth rate for 3-5 years.

Based in Columbus, OH and founded in 1967, Big Lots is a broad-line closeout retailer in the United States. The company offers products under various merchandising categories, which include Food, Consumables, Furniture, Seasonal, Soft Home, Hard Home, and Electronics & Accessories. The company has an impressive track record with respect to earnings, having surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the past four quarters by an average of 81.1%. The stock carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here .

Leawood, KS-based AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. is engaged in the theatrical exhibition business. The company has an impressive track record with respect to earnings, having surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the past four quarters by an average of 120.1%. The stock carries a Zacks Rank #3.

Commercial Metals Company manufactures, recycles, and markets steel and metal products, and related materials and services in the United States and internationally. The company has surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in two of the last four quarters by an average of 23.4%. The stock carries a Zacks Rank #2.

Delek US Holdings, Inc. operates as an integrated energy company that provides petroleum refining and transportation services. The company operates in two segments, Refining and Logistics. The company has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-quarter earnings being revised 19% upward over the last 30 days. The stock carries a Zacks Rank #2.

You can get the rest of the stocks on this list by signing up now for your 2-week free trial to the Research Wizard and start using this screen in your own trading. Further, you can also create your own strategies and test them first before taking the investment plunge.

The Research Wizard is a great place to begin. It's easy to use. Everything is in plain language. And it's very intuitive. Start your Research Wizard trial today. And the next time you read an economic report, open up the Research Wizard, plug your finds in, and see what gems come out.

Click here to sign up for a free trial to the Research Wizard today .

And that's what we're screening for today…

For the rest of this Screen of the Week article please visit Zacks.com at: https://www.zacks.com/stock/news/279509/5-broker-favorite-stocks-to-keep-an-eye-on

Disclosure: Officers, directors and/or employees of Zacks Investment Research may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material. An affiliated investment advisory firm may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material.

About Screen of the Week

Zacks.com created the first and best screening system on the web earning the distinction as the "#1 site for screening stocks" by Money Magazine. But powerful screening tools is just the start. That is why Zacks created the Screen of the Week to highlight profitable stock picking strategies that investors can actively use.

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 more than doubled the market from 1988 through 2016. Its average gain has been a stellar +25% per year. See these high-potential stocks free >>.

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Contact: Jim Giaquinto

Company: Zacks.com

Phone: 312-265-9268

Email: pr@zacks.com

Visit: https://www.zacks.com/

Zacks.com provides investment resources and informs you of these resources, which you may choose to use in making your own investment decisions. Zacks is providing information on this resource to you subject to the Zacks "Terms and Conditions of Service" disclaimer. www.zacks.com/disclaimer .

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


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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