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Reasons to Retain Your Automatic Data Processing (ADP) Stock

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Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP - Free Report) has gained 37.2% over the past six months, outperforming the 19% rally of the Zacks S&P 500 composite. The company has a long-term expected earnings per share (three to five years) growth rate of 12%.

What’s Driving the Stock?

ADP has been able to accelerate DataCloud penetration and increase investment in inside sales, mid-market migrations and service-alignment initiatives through its ongoing transformation initiatives. Through these, the company continues to innovate, improve operations, expand margins and enhance innovation abilities.

ADP had a total debt of $1.99 billion at the end of second-quarter fiscal 2021, flat sequentially. Total-debt-to-total-capital ratio of 0.25 was lower than the industry's 0.35. Lower debt as a percentage of total capital indicates that a company has a lower risk of insolvency. Further, the company did not have any short-term debt at the end of the quarter.

Some Risks

ADP is seeing an increase in expenses as it continues to invest in transformation efforts. The company’s total expenses in second-quarter fiscal 2021 were higher year over year, although by a slight margin. This is likely to keep the bottom line under pressure, going forward.

The company faces significant competition in each of its product lines. Both its Employer services and PEO services segments compete with other independent business outsourcing companies in most of their operating regions. Failure to remain technologically updated might reduce the demand for its solutions and services.

Zacks Rank and Stocks to Consider

ADP currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the broader Zacks Business Services sector are The Interpublic Group of Companies (IPG - Free Report) , Cross Country Healthcare (CCRN - Free Report) and Charles River Associates (CRAI - Free Report) , each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

The long-term expected earnings per share (three to five years) growth rate for Interpublic, Cross Country Healthcare and Charles River is pegged at 2.4%, 12% and 13%, respectively.

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