Today's Must Read
Enterprise (EPD) to Grow on Fee-Based Contracts, Debts High
Strategic Buyouts Aid Marsh & McLennan (MMC), Expenses Hurt
Thursday, August 30, 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 Petrobras (PBR), Enterprise Products Partners (EPD) and Marsh & McLennan (MMC). These research reports have been hand-picked from the roughly 70 reports published by our analyst team today.
Shares of buy-rated Petrobras have underperformed the Zacks Emerging Markets Integrated Oil industry over the last three months, declining -9.3% vs. -0.6%. However, with higher oil prices helping the state-run energy giant report a jump in second-quarter profits, the stock should return to favor.
Brazil's flagship oil company’s net quarterly profit of $2,794 million was the highest since 2011. The company also dished out a strong free cash flow performance that reflected operational improvement and lower investments.
Importantly, Petrobras has been able to trim its massive debt load. As it is, the company stands to benefit from Brazil’s economic growth and huge pre-salt oil reserves. Consequently, Petrobras offers substantial upside potential from the current price levels and is a preferred emerging market energy play to own now.
Enterprise Products’ shares have gained +14.3% over the last six months, even as the Zacks Oil Production Pipeline MLP industry advanced by +13.1%. The partnership boasts of an extensive network of pipeline that spreads across 50,000 miles.
Importantly, the pipeline network is connected to every major U.S. shale play and provides services to producers and users of commodities by transporting gas, liquids and refined products. Almost 80% of the Enterprise Products’ pipeline contracts with shippers have been extended for 15 to 20 years, which should help the partnership generate steady cashflow for unit holders.
The partnership recently reported strong second-quarter 2018 earnings. However, rising operating expenses has been affecting the partnership’s bottom-line. Moreover, the partnership has significant exposure to debt, which is a serious concern.
Shares of Marsh & McLennan have outperformed the Zacks Insurance Broker industry in the last year, gaining (+8.3% vs. +7.6%). The company is well-poised to grow on the back of significant investments and acquisitions made within its different operating units. These deals have enabled the company to expand within the existing presence, foray into new businesses and also develop new segments.
The company will see growth in the middle and small commercial areas. It has some plans to enhance its geographic footprint as well. Its ongoing investments are likely to boost its margins. However, high costs and low investment income remain headwinds for the company.
Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include HSBC Holdings (HSBC), Carnival (CCL) and Valero Energy (VLO).
Best Electric Car Stock? You'll Never Guess It.
Zacks Research has released a report that may shock many investors. One stock stands out as the best way to invest in the surge to electric cars. And it's not the one you may think!
Much like petroleum 150 years ago, lithium battery power is set to shake the world, creating millionaires and reshaping geo-politics. Soon electric vehicles (EVs) may be cheaper than gas guzzlers. Some are already reaching 265 miles on a single charge. With battery prices plummeting and charging stations set to multiply, revenues that were already at $31 billion in 2016 are expected to blast to over $67 billion by the end of 2022.
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>>>