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OmniVision Technologies, Calavo Growers, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo highlighted as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day

OVTI CVGW C JPM WFC

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – June 18, 2013 – Zacks Equity Research highlights OmniVision Technologies ((OVTI - Analyst Report)-Free Report) as the Bull of the Day and Calavo Growers (CVGW-Free Report) as the Bear of the Day. In addition, Zacks Equity Research provides analysis on Citigroup Inc. (C - Analyst Report)-Free Report), JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM - Analyst Report)-Free Report) and Wells Fargo & Company (WFC - Analyst Report)-Free Report).

Here is a synopsis of all five stocks:

Bull of the Day:

OmniVision Technologies ((OVTI - Analyst Report)-Free Report) recently delivered its third straight positive earnings surprise as it continues to benefit from growing demand for smarthpones. Following the most recent beat, management provided guidance above consensus, prompting analysts to raise their estimates significantly higher.

This sent the stock to a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

OmniVision Technologies, Inc. makes advanced digital imaging technologies for consumer and commercial applications including mobile phones, tablets, notebooks and webcams, entertainment devices, security and surveillance systems, digital still and video cameras, automotive and medical imaging systems.

The company is well-positioned to benefit from growing global demand for smartphones, particularly in the emerging markets. It is headquartered in Santa Clara, California and has a market cap of $1.0 billion.

OmniVision reported its fiscal 2013 fourth quarter results on May 30. The company delivered earnings per share of 17 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 9 cents. It was the company's third consecutive positive earnings surprise.

Bear of the Day:

Calavo Growers (CVGW-Free Report) recently reported a big second quarter earnings miss despite strong top-line growth thanks to a significant decline in the gross profit margin.

This prompted analysts to revise their estimates lower going forward, sending the stock to a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell).

With shares trading at a lofty 20x forward earnings, investors should consider waiting for earnings momentum to turn around before establishing a position here.

Calavo Growers, Inc. distributes avocados, prepared avocado products, and other perishable food products to food distributors, produce wholesalers, supermarkets, and restaurants. The company obtains avocados primarily from California, Mexico, and Chile. It was founded in 1924 and has a market cap of $401 million.

Calavo Growers reported its fiscal 2013 second quarter results on June 5. Earnings per share came in at 19 cents, significantly below the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 39 cents. It was the company's second straight earnings miss.

 

Additional content:

 

Foreclosure Activity Up from April

 

Indicating a continuous strengthening of housing prices, the foreclosure market report – released by RealtyTrac – depicted a marginal rise in overall foreclosure activity in May 2013. According to this leading online marketplace of foreclosure properties, foreclosure filings were up 2% from Apr 2013 but down 28% from May 2012.

This brought the aggregate number of properties receiving default, auction or repossession notices to 148,054. The primary reason for the monthly rise was an increase in bank repossessions (REOs), which was up 11% from Apr 2013 but down 29% from May 2012 with 38,946 properties in May.

In aggregate, 33 states reported a monthly rise in REO activity. Further, from Apr 2013, REO activity rose 9% in non-judicial states and 13% in judicial states.

Additionally, Citigroup Inc. (C - Analyst Report)-Free Report) was the lone mortgage servicer – among the 5 banks involved in last year’s national mortgage settlement – to report lower repossessions in May. The other banks include JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM - Analyst Report)-Free Report) and Wells Fargo & Company (WFC - Analyst Report)-Free Report) recorded a rise in repossessions.

Moreover, foreclosure starts – default notices issued and foreclosure auctions (depending on the state’s foreclosure procedure) – jumped 4% from Apr 2013 but declined 33% from May 2012 to 72,938 properties in the reported month. Foreclosure starts increased in 26 states on a monthly basis, while 14 states reported the rise on a yearly basis.

The foreclosure problem continued to shift toward judicial states. In the reported month, Florida, Ohio, Maryland, South Carolina and Illinois had 5 of the top 6 foreclosure rates countrywide. In the second position, Nevada was top-ranked among the non-judicial states.

Rise in foreclosure activity is expected continue as mortgage servicers are more confident of getting higher value for foreclosed properties, given the increasing demand for these as well as rise in home prices. Further, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller index of values in 20 cities, the U.S. home prices rose almost 11% in the year through Mar 2013, marking the biggest yearly gain since Apr 2006. However, foreclosure activity is expected to remain volatile, as the processes being used for handling these differ from state to state.

Nevertheless, the stabilizing housing sector, increase in jobs, and low mortgage rates will likely make homeowners avoid foreclosures. Additionally, the rate at which properties are entering the foreclosure procedure is expected to eventually slacken, leading to further rise in housing prices.

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About the Bull and Bear of the Day

Every day, the analysts at Zacks Equity Research select two stocks that are likely to outperform (Bull) or underperform (Bear) the markets over the next 3-6 months.

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