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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Bassett Furniture, Crocs and Mattel

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – May 3, 2021 – 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: Bassett Furniture Industries, Inc. (BSET - Free Report) , Crocs, Inc. (CROX - Free Report) and Mattel, Inc. (MAT - Free Report) .

Here are highlights from Friday’s Analyst Blog:

Stocks to Buy as Consumer Spending Drives Expansion

The U.S. economy remained on an expansion path in the first quarter of 2021, continuing its recovery from the drubbing it received from the COVID-19 pandemic in the first half of last year. Per the "advance" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the first-quarter 2021 GDP increased 6.4% compared to the fourth-quarter 2020 increase of 4.3%. Notably, this marked the second-fastest pace of growth since the second quarter of 2003, as mentioned in a CNBC article.

When the COVID-19 pandemic broke out last year, lockdowns had to be imposed across the country to curb its spread and in turn, economic activities took a hit. The CNBC article mentioned that in the second quarter of last year, GDP plunged 31.4% but staged a stellar recovery in the third quarter as it expanded at an annual rate of 33.4%.

However, growth has moderated with the economy being on  an expansion mode as suggested by the latest first-quarter readings. So, what led the first-quarter 2021 GDP to expand at such a swift pace? Well, one of the primary reasons has been the rapid increase in personal consumption expenditure.

Markedly, the CNBC article stated that consumers, who account for 68.2% of the economy, increased their spending by 10.7% in the first quarter compared with an increase of 2.3% in the previous period. The accelerated spending has come on the back of the additional $1,400 stimulus checks that consumers received.

Notably, the spending was focused mainly on goods as it increased 23.6% and within it, spending on durable goods rose 41.4%. This means that consumers are increasing their expenditure on discretionary products as the economy continues to recover.

Reflective of this, the Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR Fund has gained 10.9% year to date. Adding more fuel to the recovery, the vaccination drive has been progressing quite well across the United States with a Guardian article citing that President Joe Biden has stated that within his first 100 days in office, 220 million vaccine doses have been administered.

To add to the flurry of positive developments, the Conference Board also stated that consumer confidence soared to a 14-month high in April, as mentioned in a Reuters article. Notably, the article stated that the consumer confidence index reported a reading of 121.7, reaching its highest level since February 2020 compared to a reading of 109.0 in March.

3 Top Consumer Discretionary Picks

The U.S. economy has remained on its expansion path, after recovering sharply from the pandemic-related woes during the first half of last year. Markedly, consumers increased their personal consumption expenditure during the first quarter of 2021, thanks to the additional round of fiscal stimulus that they received.

Moreover, consumer confidence about the state of the economy seems to be improving. Hence, this comes across as an opportune moment to invest in consumer discretionary stocks with sound fundamentals that can make the most of this uptick going forward.

Notably, we have handpicked four such stocks that carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) or 2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Bassett Furniture Industries engages in the manufacture, marketing and retail of home furnishings in the United States and internationally. The company currently has a Zacks Rank #1. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 18.8% over the past 60 days. The company's expected earnings growth rate for the current year is more than 100%.

Crocs, together with its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, markets, and distributes casual lifestyle footwear and accessories for men, women and children. The company currently has a Zacks Rank #1. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 0.8% over the past 60 days. The company's expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 21.7%.

Mattel, a children's entertainment company, designs and produces toys and consumer products worldwide. The company currently has a Zacks Rank #1. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 20% over the past 60 days. The company's expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 66.7%.

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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Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Inherent in any investment is the potential for loss. This material is being provided for informational purposes only and nothing herein constitutes investment, legal, accounting or tax advice, or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold a security. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. It should not be assumed that any investments in securities, companies, sectors or markets identified and described were or will be profitable. All information is current as of the date of herein and is subject to change without notice. Any views or opinions expressed may not reflect those of the firm as a whole. Zacks Investment Research does not engage in investment banking, market making or asset management activities of any securities. These returns are from hypothetical portfolios consisting of stocks with Zacks Rank = 1 that were rebalanced monthly with zero transaction costs. These are not the returns of actual portfolios of stocks. The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index. Visit https://www.zacks.com/performance for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.


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Mattel, Inc. (MAT) - free report >>

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Bassett Furniture Industries, Incorporated (BSET) - free report >>