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Why You Should Retain ICF International (ICFI) Stock Now

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ICF International, Inc. (ICFI - Free Report) has a strong global presence in diverse markets and its robust, long-term relationships with clients should continue to drive sales.

ICF’s 2022 and 2023 revenues are expected to improve 14.2% and 11%, respectively, year over year. Earnings are anticipated to rise 20.1% and 1.9% in 2022 and 2023, respectively.

Factors That Augur Well

Increased government focus on environmental initiatives, efficiency and mission performance management, transparency and accountability, and heightened demand for integrating domain knowledge of client missions and programs with innovative technology-enabled solutions is driving demand for ICF’s advisory services.

The company is seeing a significant increase in revenues from its high-growth markets, which include IT modernization/digital transformation, public health, disaster management, utility consulting, climate, environment and infrastructure services. A 1.31 trailing 12-month book-to-bill ratio and a $9 billion new business pipeline at the end of the third quarter of 2022 provide good revenue visibility for the near term.

Strategic acquisitions have helped to reduce the company’s dependency on government spending. In addition, the acquisitions have expanded its offerings and provided scale in certain geographies. Past and future acquisitions are also expected to contribute to the growth of ICF’s EBITDA and free cash flow.

Some Risks

ICF is seeing an escalation in costs as it is making significant investments in internal infrastructure and acquisitions. The company’s operating costs and expenses increased 3.9% in 2021. These expenses rose 5.1% year over year in 2020 and 9.2% in 2019.

Zacks Rank and Stocks to Consider

ICF currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the broader Zacks Business Services sector are Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Corporation (BAH - Free Report)  and CRA International, Inc. (CRAI - Free Report) .

Booz Allen presently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). BAH has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 8.9%. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Booz Allen delivered a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 8.8% on average.

CRA International carries a Zacks Rank of 2 at present. CRAI has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 14.3%.

CRA International delivered a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 25.7% on average.

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