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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Amazon, Intel, Eli Lilly, Illinois Tool Works and Southern

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – June 28, 2018 – 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 Amazon (AMZN - Free Report) , Intel (INTC - Free Report) , Eli Lilly (LLY - Free Report) , Illinois Tool Works (ITW - Free Report) and Southern Company (SO - Free Report) .

Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.

Here are highlights from Wednesday’s Analyst Blog:

Top Research Reports for Amazon, Intel & Eli Lilly

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 Amazon, Intel and Eli Lilly. 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 >>>

Amazon’s shares have outperformed the broader market year to date by a wide margin. (the stock is up +44.6% vs. the +2.1% gain for the S&P 500 as a whole). The Zacks analyst thinks Amazon is benefiting from an expanding AWS enterprise customer base, benefits from Whole Foods acquisition and increasing number of paid Prime members.

In the first-quarter, AWS was selected by enterprise customers like GoDaddy, Cox Automotive, Shutterfly, NextGen Healthcare, Amway and LG Electronics. Collaboration with VMware is expected to boost AWS product offerings in the long haul. Notably, AWS generates much higher margins than retail, positively impacting Amazon’s profitability.

Additionally, Amazon’s expanding distribution footprint bodes well for Prime. However, the company's increased operating expenses to support expansion of its business into new markets and territories, localize the availability of products and grow its content will keep margins under pressure.

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

Shares of Buy-ranked Intel have underperformed the Zacks General Semiconductor industry over the past one year, gaining +45.2% vs. +49.5%. However, the Zacks analyst thinks Intel is benefiting from robust performance of the Data Center Group, Internet-of-Things Group, Non-Volatile Memory Solutions and Programmable Solutions Group. These segments form the crux of Intel’s data-centric business model.

The company’s strategy of expanding TAM beyond CPU to adjacent product lines like silicon photonics, fabric, network ASICs, and 3D XPoint memory is bearing fruit. Its expanding customer base in the PSG segment drove top-line growth. A stable PC market is also positive for the company.

Additionally, lower spending helped in expanding operating margins. Intel raised 2018 guidance based on these solid growth trends. However, delay in transition to 10-nm process is a concern. Moreover, intensifying competition remains a headwind.

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

Eli Lilly’s shares have outperformed the Zacks Large-Cap Pharmaceuticals industry in the last year (+2.4% vs. -3%). The Zacks analyst thinks Lilly’s presence across a wide range of therapeutic areas provides support in the face of generic competition. Lilly’s new products like Trulicity, Taltz, Basaglar, Cyramza, Jardiance and Lartruvo have been driving revenues and the trend is expected to continue in 2018.

Lilly expects to launch 20 new products by 2023, including at least two new indications/line extensions on an average every year. The decision to sell or spin-off the Animal Health segment, which has underperformed lately, is a prudent decision in our view. However, competitive pressure on Lilly’s drugs is expected to rise this year.

Challenges remain for the company in the form of upcoming loss of patent exclusivity for products like Cialis and the impact of generic competition for Strattera, Effient and Axiron. U.S. pricing access pressure will also remain a headwind in 2018.

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

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Illinois Tool Works and Southern Company.

The Hottest Tech Mega-Trend of All

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See Zacks' 3 Best Stocks to Play This Trend >>

Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1 Stock of the Day pick for free.

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



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