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For Immediate Release
Chicago, IL – September 10, 2012 – Zacks Equity Research highlights Panera Bread Co. (PNRA - Analyst Report) as the Bull of the Day and Progressive Corp. (PGR - Analyst Report) as the Bear of the Day. In addition, Zacks Equity Research provides analysis on Liberty Global Inc. (LBTYA - Analyst Report), Apple Inc. (AAPL - Analyst Report) and Intel Corp. (INTC - Analyst Report).
Full analysis of all these stocks is available at http://at.zacks.com/?id=2678.
Here is a synopsis of all five stocks:
Bull of the Day:
We believe Panera Bread Co. (PNRA - Analyst Report) remains well positioned to reinvigorate brands, revitalize comparable store sales and accelerate unit growth in the long run. The introduction of a new menu, increased positive impact from media support, traction to off-premises catering program and faster recovery of higher-end consumers promises further growth.
Most importantly, Panera expects commodity inflation to cool down as the year progresses. We find Panera's second-quarter earnings and revenue beat, raise in full-year guidance for two consecutive quarters, the expectation of continued margin improvement and pricing power quite encouraging.
A more stable traffic growth compared to its restaurant peers also raises optimism. Hence, we upgrade our recommendation from Neutral to Outperform.
Bear of the Day:
Progressive Corp.'s (PGR - Analyst Report) second quarter earnings lagged the Zacks Consensus estimate as well as the year-ago results. The magnitude of the increase in expense was more than the increase in revenue, thus inducing lower numbers.
Considering the state of the economy, we expect significant pressure on underwriting margins and restriction in its top-line growth in the near term. We retain our Underperform rating.
Our six-month target price of $18.00 equates to 15.5x our earnings estimate for 2012. Combined with $0.41 per share annual dividend this price target implies an expected negative total return of 6.2% over that period.
Latest Posts on the Zacks Analyst Blog:
Liberty Global Unveils Horizon TV
Liberty Global Inc. (LBTYA - Analyst Report), a leading cable MSO of Europe and Latin America, launches an innovative digital TV network, called “Horizon TV”. This digital TV platform will enable customers to view and share all of their favorite content across the TV, laptop, tablet and smartphone. Initially this service will be available in the Netherlands and then in Switzerland, Germany, and Ireland within the next 3-6 months.
With Horizon TV, customers can share TV showing in multiple screens such as computers, and Apple Inc. (AAPL - Analyst Report) developed iPhones and iPads. Horizon TV also features an in-build application store for YouTube, Wikipedia and Facebook. In the second quarter, the company added 244,000 digital video subscribers. At the end of the reported quarter of 2012, Liberty Global had 8.6 million digital cable subscribers with a penetration rate of 49%.
Horizon TV gateway also offers triple-play services of video, Internet, and wireless voice. It uses Intel Corp.’s (INTC - Analyst Report) Atom chipset as processor. At the end of the previous quarter, Liberty Global had 5.6269 million triple-play clients, up 3.5% year over year. In the coming years, we believe Liberty Global’s revenue will continue to benefit from a ‘triple play’ of video, broadband, and telephone, as it signs up more “bundled” customers in Europe and Latin America.
Deployment of high-speed DOCSIS 3.0 network has significantly helped Liberty Global to differentiate its offerings in the industry. Management has devised a plan to deploy EuroDOCSIS 3.0 in the range of 80%-90% of all UPC broadband divisions in Western, Central, and Eastern Europe.
Get the full analysis of all these stocks by going to http://at.zacks.com/?id=2649.
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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