Today's Must Read
Chevron (CVX) Buoyed by Cash Flow Amid U.S. Output Headwind
Solid Missile Order Growth Aids Raytheon (RTN) Amid Tax Woes
Friday, April 6, 2018
The Zacks Research Daily presents the best research output of our analyst team. Today's Research Daily features new research reports on 16 major stocks, including Alphabet (GOOGL), Chevron (CVX) and Raytheon (RTN). These research reports have been hand-picked from the roughly 70 reports published by our analyst team today.
Alphabet’s shares have outperformed the Zacks Internet Services industry in the last year (the stock is up +22.6% vs. +15.8% gain for the industry). The Zacks analyst likes its focus on innovation, AI, cloud, home automation space, strategic acquisitions and Android OS, which should continue to generate strong cash flows.
Alphabet has shown good execution to date, more or less maintaining its dominant share in a competitive, fast-growing search market. Its diversification strategy is also positive, but requires significant investment and involves uncertain payback periods, particularly since these efforts are at the cutting edge of technology.
However, increased spending on its consumer gadgets, YouTube video app and cloud computing services remain concerns. Also, increasing litigation issues could continue to impact the company’s profits.
Shares of Chevron have risen +7.8% in the last one year, underperforming the Zacks Integrated Oil industry's +10.1% increase, despite being a beneficiary of the recovery in commodity prices. In particular, the stock slumped more than 5% after missing fourth-quarter estimates badly.
Nevertheless, Chevron saw strong profit growth in its upstream unit on better price realizations. More importantly, Chevron was able to bolster its cash from operations - something investors really want right now. The improving cash position allowed the company to raise its dividend by almost 4%.
However, the Zacks analyst remains worried over disappointing earnings in Chevron's international refining business, while signs of headwind in the U.S. production pose additional risks. Hence, investors had best wait for a better entry point before buying shares in the oil major.
Raytheon’s shares have risen around +43.5% over the last one year, outperforming the Zacks Defense Equipment industry, which has increased +35.9% over the same period. Raytheon ended 2017 on a mixed note. While its fourth-quarter earnings figure comfortably surpassed expectations, the top-line number failed to meet the consensus estimate.
Year over year, tax reform had an adverse impact on bottom-line growth, whereas revenues saw an uptick. Raytheon is one of the best-positioned large-cap defense players due to its non-platform-centric focus. Thanks to its wide range of combat-proven defense products, the company continues to receive numerous orders from both Pentagon as well as foreign allies.
Moreover, the company is a strong cash generator, which allows it to pay attractive dividends to shareholders. On the flip side, factors like tough competition and political uncertainty continue to be major headwinds for Raytheon.
Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include CME Group (CME), Chubb (CB) and T. Rowe Price (TROW).
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It's not the one you think.
Note: Sheraz Mian heads the Zacks Equity Research department and is a well-regarded expert of aggregate earnings. He is frequently quoted in the print and electronic media and publishes the weekly Earnings Trends and Earnings Preview reports. If you want an email notification each time Sheraz publishes a new article, please click here>>>