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Will LabCorp (LH) Gain on Rising Earnings Estimates?

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Investors might want to bet on LabCorp (LH - Free Report) , as earnings estimates for this company have been showing solid improvement lately. The stock has already gained solid short-term price momentum, and this trend might continue with its still improving earnings outlook.

The rising trend in estimate revisions, which is a result of growing analyst optimism on the earnings prospects of this medical laboratory operator, should get reflected in its stock price. After all, empirical research shows a strong correlation between trends in earnings estimate revisions and near-term stock price movements. Our stock rating tool -- the Zacks Rank -- is principally built on this insight.

The five-grade Zacks Rank system, which ranges from a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) to a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell), has an impressive externally-audited track record of outperformance, with Zacks #1 Ranked stocks generating an average annual return of +25% since 2008.

For LabCorp, there has been strong agreement among the covering analysts in raising earnings estimates, which has helped push consensus estimates considerably higher for the next quarter and full year.

The chart below shows the evolution of forward 12-month Zacks Consensus EPS estimate:

12 Month EPS

Current-Quarter Estimate Revisions

For the current quarter, the company is expected to earn $4.88 per share, which is a change of -53.79% from the year-ago reported number.

Over the last 30 days, four estimates have moved higher for LabCorp compared to no negative revisions. As a result, the Zacks Consensus Estimate has increased 12.74%.

Current-Year Estimate Revisions

The company is expected to earn $25.94 per share for the full year, which represents a change of +8.35% from the prior-year number.

In terms of estimate revisions, the trend for the current year also appears quite encouraging for LabCorp. Over the past month, five estimates have moved higher compared to no negative revisions, helping the consensus estimate increase 14.5%.

Favorable Zacks Rank

Thanks to promising estimate revisions, LabCorp currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The Zacks Rank is a tried-and-tested rating tool that helps investors effectively harness the power of earnings estimate revisions and make the right investment decision. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Our research shows that stocks with Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and 2 (Buy) significantly outperform the S&P 500.

Bottom Line

LabCorp shares have added 5% over the past four weeks, suggesting that investors are betting on its impressive estimate revisions. So, you may consider adding it to your portfolio right away to benefit from its earnings growth prospects.


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