Today's Must Read
New Branches, Loan Growth Aid BofA (BAC), Lower Rates a Woe
Home Depot (HD) Stands to Gain from One Home Depot Plan
Thursday, November 21, 2019
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 Facebook (FB), Bank of America (BAC) and Home Depot (HD). These research reports have been hand-picked from the roughly 70 reports published by our analyst team today.
Facebook’s shares have outperformed the S&P 500 year to date (+50.7% vs. +22.8%). The Zacks analyst believes that solid mobile ad revenues, driven by impressive growth in Instagram Stories and Feed, and Facebook News Feed, are a major growth driver.
Interactive Stories ads on Instagram are likely to lead to better interaction among people, businesses and advertisers. Moreover, strong adoption of Oculus Quest is a key catalyst. Facebook’s initiatives to improve privacy, transparency and authenticity of ads are likely to boost user trust and engagement.
Further, partnerships with ESPN and Fox for sports-related streaming on Facebook Watch are a positive. However, a persistent mix shift toward Stories is anticipated to hurt ARPU. Also, the company’s rising regulatory headwinds, including the antitrust investigation and the EU’s investigation of Libra, are a concern.
Shares of Bank of America have gained 20.2% in the past three months against the Zacks Major Regional Banks rise of 18.5%. The Zacks analyst believes that opening branches in new regions, improved digital offerings, decent loan growth and efforts to control costs will aid profitability despite the Fed’s accommodative monetary policy stance.
The bank's earnings have surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the trailing four quarters. Also, efforts to focus more on consumer banking business have started bearing fruits. The company's enhanced capital deployment actions reflect a strong balance sheet position.
However, dismal performance of capital markets continues to hurt the company’s investment banking and trading businesses, which in turn will hamper fee income growth. Litigation issues related to its business misconducts in the pre-crisis period are likely to lead to higher legal costs.
Home Depot’s shares have gained 16.9% over the past six months against the Zacks Retail Building Products industry's rise of 17.3%. The Zacks analyst attributed the company’s recent setbacks to lower-than-expected sales results in third-quarter fiscal 2019, which was followed by a slashed view for fiscal 2019.
The top line lagged primarily due to timing issues related to the receipt of certain benefits from the One Home Depot investments. Further, commodity deflation in lumber and copper partly hurt the company’s comparable sales performance. Moreover, its margins remained soft.
However, the company kept its earnings beat streak alive. Earnings benefited from progress on strategic investments. Its efforts to provide an interconnected shopping experience to customers, with innovative products and improved productivity, also position it for growth.
Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include SAP SE (SAP), Amgen (AMGN) and Intuitive (ISRG).
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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>>>