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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Johnson & Johnson, JPMorgan, Microsoft, Motorola, J.M. Smucker and Entergy

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – August 30, 2017 – 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 includeJohnson & Johnson (NYSE:(JNJ - Free Report) Free Report), JPMorgan (NYSE:(JPM - Free Report) Free Report), Microsoft (NASDAQ:(MSFT - Free Report) Free Report), Motorola (NYSE:(MSI - Free Report) Free Report), J.M. Smucker (NYSE:(SJM - Free Report) Free Report) and Entergy Corp (NYSE:(ETR - Free Report) Free Report).   

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Here are highlights from Tuesday’s Analyst Blog:

Top Research Reports for Johnson & Johnson, JPMorgan and Microsoft

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 Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:(JNJ - Free Report) Free Report), JPMorgan (NYSE:(JPM - Free Report) Free Report) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:(MSFT - Free Report) Free Report). 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 >>>

Johnson & Johnson shares have gained +16.6% year to date, outperforming the large-cap pharma space (up +14.1%). Sales in J&J’s domestic Pharma segment have decelerated this year as a number of key growth drivers like Remicade and Concerta are facing competition.

However, J&J is optimistic that sales growth will accelerate in 2H17. The Zacks analyst thinks new drugs like Xarelto, Stelara, Darzalex and Imbruvica remain the keys to growth. Meanwhile, share buybacks and restructuring initiatives should provide bottom-line support.

J&J is also making rapid progress with its pipeline and line extensions. The Actelion buy adds an attractive new therapeutic area – PAH – which should contribute to sales growth. However, headwinds like negative currency movement, generics, pricing pressure and soft global market conditions remain. Sluggish growth in the Consumer segment is also a concern. Meanwhile, HCV sales continue to decline in the face of intense competition.

(You canread the full research report on Johnson & Johnson here >>>).

Shares of JPMorgan have gained +37.6% over the last year, outperforming the Zacks Major Regional Banks industry, which is up +29.9% over the same period. This price performance is backed by impressive earnings surprise history. The company has surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in each of the trailing four quarters.

The Zacks analyst likes the company’s efforts to control expenses through streamlining and branch consolidation. These have been supporting bottom line growth. While the company faces a persistent fee income growth challenge, the improved rate scenario, potential lesser regulations (once the Financial Choice Act gets implemented) and rising loan demand should continue to benefit its financials. Also, the bank's impressive capital deployment plans reflect its strong balance sheet position.

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

Microsoft’s shares lagged the Zacks Technology sector through the fall, but have led the way over the last six months (up +12.7% versus +8.6%) on greater appreciation for the company's reorganization and repositioning. The Zacks analyst thinks Microsoft is benefiting from continuing enterprise strength, strong Office 365 and Windows 10 adoption and robust penetration of Azure.

LinkedIn has also improved the company's presence in the social media market, which improved top-line growth. The company's upcoming console, Xbox One X, has significant growth potential, as evident from the record pre-orders. However, the delay in launching Crackdown 3 doesn't bode well for the console's market share. Lack of exclusive games on the platform as compared with Sony's PS4 is a concern.

Moreover, management expects expenses to increase in fiscal 2018 due to continuing investments. This will weigh on profitability in the near term. Intensifying competition in the cloud space and unfavorable foreign exchange are other headwinds.

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

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Motorola (NYSE:(MSI - Free Report) Free Report), J.M. Smucker (NYSE:(SJM - Free Report) Free Report) and Entergy Corp (NYSE:(ETR - Free Report) Free Report).

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About Zacks Equity Research

Zacks Equity Research provides the best of quantitative and qualitative analysis to help investors know what stocks to buy and which to sell for the long-term.

Continuous coverage is provided for a universe of 1,150 publicly traded stocks. Our analysts are organized by industry which gives them keen insights to developments that affect company profits and stock performance. Recommendations and target prices are six-month time horizons.

Strong Stocks that Should Be in the News

Many are little publicized and fly under the Wall Street radar. They're virtually unknown to the general public. Yet today's 220 Zacks Rank #1 "Strong Buys" were generated by the stock-picking system that has nearly tripled the market from 1988 through 2015. Its average gain has been a stellar +26% per year.See these high-potential stocks free >>.

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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/performancefor information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.



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