A wise investment decision involves buying well-performing stocks at the right time while selling those that are at risk. A rise in share price and strong fundamentals signal a stock’s bullish run.
ICF International, Inc. (ICFI - Free Report) is a government services stock that performed extremely well over the past year and has potential to carry the momentum forward in the near term. Therefore, if you haven’t taken advantage of the share price appreciation yet, it’s time you add the stock to your portfolio.
Here’s why the stock is an attractive pick.
Share Price Performance
A glimpse of the company’s price trend shows that the stock has had an impressive run on the bourse over the past year. ICF has returned 29.2% compared with the industry’s rally of 18.1%.
ICF has a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). Our research shows that stocks with a solid Zacks Rank #1 or 2 (Buy) offer attractive investment opportunities for investors. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Northward Estimate Revisions
Two estimates for 2018 moved north over the past 60 days while there was no southbound revision. This reflects analysts’ confidence in the company. The stock has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings being revised 2.1% upward.
Solid Growth Prospects
The consensus estimate for 2018 earnings of $3.81 represents a year-over-year improvement of 26.2%. The bottom line is expected to increase 11.6% in 2019. ICF has an expected long-term earnings growth rate of 10%.
ICF continues to witness contract wins and growth in its business development pipeline — a significant portion of which is represented by disaster recovery. Also, it is experiencing solid improvement in international government work and stable revenue growth from federal, state and local government clients.
ICF looks well poised for additional contract wins in the federal government market because of the raised fiscal 2018 and 2019 civilian agency budgets, approved earlier this year. During the second half of 2018, the company anticipates RFPs to be issued by civilian agency clients.
In the commercial business category, demand remains strong across the markets that it serves.Within the commercial business, marketing service is benefiting from increased focus on digital commerce and social media as well as loyalty marketing. ICF’s commercial energy markets group also looks well poised to benefit from advisory work connected to transformations in the utility industry and increase in mandated energy efficiency programs across the United States.
The company’s recent acquisition of disaster planning and recovery services firm, DMS Disaster Consultants, should improve its disaster response, recovery and preparedness offerings and help it expand further into the state and local government markets.
Other Stocks to Consider
Some other top-ranked stocks in the broader Business Services sector include Broadridge Financial Solutions (BR - Free Report) , Paychex (PAYX - Free Report) and Convergys , each carrying a Zacks Rank of 2.
The long-term expected earnings per share growth rate for Broadridge Financial Solutions, Paychex and Convergys is 10%, 8.2% and 7.5%, respectively.
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