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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: CRM, MRK, T, NKE and GSK

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – September 1, 2020 – Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include salesforce.com (CRM - Free Report) , Merck Co. (MRK - Free Report) , AT&T (T - Free Report) , NIKE (NKE - Free Report) and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK - Free Report) .

Here are highlights from Monday’s Analyst Blog:

Top Analyst Reports for salesforce.com, Merck and AT&T

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 salesforce.com, Merck Co. and AT&T. These research reports have been hand-picked from the roughly 70 reports published by our analyst team today.

You can see all of today’s research reports here >>>

Salesforce shares have outperformed the Zacks Computer Software industry in the year-to-date period (+65.4% vs. +40.1%) on the back of a robust demand environment as customers undergo a major digital transformation. The rapid adoption of its cloud-based solutions is driving demand for its products. The company's addition to the Dow Jones Industrial Average represents another source of spotlight for this stock. 

salesforce’s sustained focus on introducing more aligned products as per customer needs is driving its top-line. Continued deal wins in the international market is another growth driver. Furthermore, the recent acquisition of Tableau positions the company to be a leader in business analytics for actionable results in everything from operations to HR.

However, stiff competition from Oracle and Microsoft is a concern. Besides, unfavorable currency fluctuations along with increasing investments in international expansions and data centers are an overhang on near-term profitability.

(You can read the full research report on salesforce here >>>)

Shares of Merck have gained +5.2% over the past six months against the Zacks Large Cap Pharmaceuticals industry’s rise of +7.2%. The Zacks analyst believes that Merck’s products like Keytruda, Lynparza and Bridion are driving sales.

Animal health and vaccine products remain core growth drivers. The potential separation into two companies makes strategic sense as the remaining Merck should be able to achieve higher profits than the combined company.

Merck experienced less-severe-than-anticipated COVID-19 impact on second-quarter results and expects trends to improve in the second half. However, generic competition for several drugs and rising competitive pressure, mainly on the diabetes franchise, will continue to be overhangs on the top line.

(You can read the full research report on Merck here >>>)

AT&T shares have lost -3.3% over the past three months against the Zacks Wireless National industry’s rise of +10.9%. The Zacks analyst believes that AT&T is well placed to benefit from the streaming services of its newly launched HBO Max. The company is committed to a three-year financial framework with sustained investments and debt-reduction efforts.

AT&T intends to deploy a standards-based, nationwide mobile 5G network to spur growth. The company expects to gain a competitive edge through edge computing services that offer the flexibility to better manage data traffic.

However, AT&T is witnessing a steady decline in linear TV subscribers, legacy services and wireline division. Continued cord-cutting remains a perennial challenge as consumers increasingly cancel pay TV packages for cheaper streaming options. As it tries to woo customers with discounts, freebies and cash credits, margins tend to fall. Spectrum crunch in a saturated wireless market is another operational headwind.

(You can read the full research report on AT&T here >>>)

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include NIKE and GlaxoSmithKline.

5 Stocks Set to Double

Each was hand-picked by a Zacks expert as the #1 favorite stock to gain +100% or more in 2020. Each comes from a different sector and has unique qualities and catalysts that could fuel exceptional growth.

Most of the stocks in this report are flying under Wall Street radar, which provides a great opportunity to get in on the ground floor.

Today, See These 5 Potential Home Runs >>

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