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Shares of Wolverine World Wide Inc. (WWW - Snapshot Report) reached a new 52-week high of $55.34 on Friday, Jun 28, beating its previous high of $54.25 on May 28. This global footwear and apparel retailer eventually closed trade at $54.61, recording a year-to-date return of 35.0%. Average volume of shares traded over the last 3 months was approximately 391K. Moreover, the company currently trades at a forward P/E of 20.59x, a 9.5% premium to the industry average of 18.81x.

The stock’s momentum is due to the company’s sustained focus on expanding its brand portfolio and international operations. In Oct 2012, Wolverine acquired Collective Brands, which boosted the company’s top and bottom lines in the last reported quarter.

We believe that the acquisition facilitated Wolverine in expanding its retail distribution capacities domestically as well as internationally. Apart from this, the transaction enhanced the company’s presence in the children’s and athletic footwear markets.

Driven by the above-mentioned acquisition, Wolverine’s first-quarter 2013 earnings of 81 cents per share beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 54 cents and jumped 26.6% year over year. Moreover, the company’s net sales of $645.9 million increased twofold from the comparable year-ago quarter and handily surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $632 million.

Furthermore, Wolverine's diversified brand portfolio and its brand management – with the focus on developing its brands further – position the company more advantageously than its peers. We believe that given the strength of many of its brands, and opportunities in distribution, the company is well poised for long-term growth.

Apart from Wolverine, companies such as Carter’s, Inc. (CRI - Snapshot Report), Cigna Corp. (CI - Analyst Report) and Magna International Inc. (MGA - Analyst Report) achieved new 52-week highs of $74.50, $73.13 and $71.97, respectively, on Jun 28, 2013.

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