Monday, December 19, 2022
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 Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BR.B), Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM) and Pfizer Inc. (PFE). 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 >>>
Shares of Berkshire Hathaway have gained +3.6% over the past year against the Zacks Insurance – Property and Casualty industry’s gain of +5.2%. The company is one of the largest property and casualty insurance companies measured by premium volume. Berkshire's inorganic growth story remains impressive with strategic acquisitions. A strong cash position supports earnings-accretive bolt-on buyouts and indicates the company's financial flexibility.
Continued insurance business growth fuels increase in float, drive earnings and generates maximum return on equity. The non-insurance businesses are delivering improved results with increased revenues over the past few years. A sturdy capital level provides further impetus.
However, exposure to catastrophe loss induces earnings volatility and also affects the property and casualty underwriting results of Berkshire. Huge capital expenditure remains a headwind for the company.
(You can read the full research report on Berkshire Hathaway here >>>)
Exxon Mobil shares have outperformed the Zacks Oil and Gas – Integrated – International industry over the past year (+77.0% vs. +46.8%). The company’s bellwether status and an optimal integrated capital structure that has historically produced industry-leading returns make it a relatively lower-risk energy sector play. The company has made more than 30 discoveries in offshore Guyana since 2015.
ExxonMobil also has a strong presence in the prolific Permian Basin, where it expects to boost production volumes by 25% in 2022. The energy major has significantly lower debt exposure than composite players belonging to the industry. Also, XOM announced a fourth-quarter dividend of 91 cents per share, indicating an increase of 3.4% from the last paid dividend.
However, ExxonMobil has been constantly bearing the brunt of increasing expenses, adversely affecting the income. Also, the aggressive capital budget remains a headwind for the company. As such, the stock warrants a cautious stance.
(You can read the full research report on Exxon Mobil here >>>)
Shares of Pfizer have underperformed the Zacks Large Cap Pharmaceuticals industry over the past year (-15.8% vs. +13.6%). The company is facing currency headwinds and pricing pressure that are key top-line headwinds. Although no company is as strongly placed in the COVID vaccines/treatment market as Pfizer, concerns remain about its long-term growth drivers beyond its COVID-related products due to competitive pressure and the impact of the pandemic receding.
Nevertheless, Pfizer boasts a diversified portfolio of innovative drugs and vaccines, including Ibrance and Prevnar. Its COVID-19 vaccine has become a key contributor to the top line. The vaccine, together with its promising oral antiviral pill for COVID-19, Paxlovid, is expected to generate a combined $56 billion in sales in 2022. Pfizer boasts a sustainable pipeline with multiple late-stage programs that can drive growth.
(You can read the full research report on Pfizer here >>>)
Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Abbott Laboratories (ABT), The Charles Schwab Corporation (SCHW) and ABB Ltd (ABB).
Director of Research
Note: Sheraz Mian heads the Zacks Equity Research department and is a well-regarded expert of aggregate earnings. He is frequently quoted in the print and electronic media and publishes the weekly Earnings Trends and Earnings Preview reports. If you want an email notification each time Sheraz publishes a new article, please click here>>>
Today's Must Read
Solid Insurance Business Aid Berkshire (BRK.B), Cat Loss Ail
ExxonMobil (XOM) Banks on Permian & Guyana Projects
Pfizer (PFE) Growth Drivers Beyond COVID Products a Concern
Abbott (ABT) Banks on Diabetes Business amid Forex Woes
The Zacks analyst is impressed with Abbott's progress with diabetes business led by strong growth in FreeStyle Libre. Yet, adverse currency movement continues to pose concerns.
Strategic Acquisitions Aid Schwab (SCHW) Amid Cost Concerns
Per the Zacks analyst, while Schwab's inorganic growth initiatives and other revenue diversification efforts will aid profits, it might lead to higher costs, thus hurting the bottom line to an extent.
Strength in Electrification Segment Aids ABB Amid High Costs
Per the Zacks analyst, strength in ABB's Electrification segment owing to strong customer activity should drive its growth. However, high operating costs pose a threat to its bottom line.
Cadence (CDNS) Benefits from Diversified Product Portfolio
Per the Zacks analyst, Cadence's performance is gaining from solid demand for the company's diversified product portfolio. Supply chain woes and stiff competition remain concerns.
Digital Prowess Aids Interpublic (IPG), Seasonality Ails
Per the Zacks analyst, Interpublic has been enhancing its digital capabilities to maintain growth in the dynamic media sector. Seasonality has a major impact on its business in the first quarter.
Science Applications (SAIC) Rides on Contract Wins, Buyouts
Per the Zacks analyst, Science Applications is benefiting from new contracts supporting IT modernization. Moreover, strategic buyouts like Koverse and Halfaker and Associates bode well for growth.
Growing Electronic Warfare Systems Demand Aid Mercury (MRCY)
Per the Zacks Analyst, high demand for electronic warfare, increased upgrades on electronic subsystems and continued flow of deals are aiding Mercury Systems' growth.
Higher Transaction Fees, Acquisitions Aid Cboe Global (CBOE)
Per the Zacks analyst, Cboe Global is set to grow on higher transaction fees driven by trading volume growth given solid proprietary products. Also, buyouts have diversified its product portfolio.
Customer Growth, Investment Aid Pinnacle West Capital (PNW)
Per the Zacks analyst Pinnacle West is gaining from customer additions, which is creating demand. Investment in infrastructure and energy generation is aiding it to serve customers efficiently.
Pacira (PCRX) Rides High on Robust Exparel Performance
Per the Zacks analyst, Pacira's flagship product Exparel has been performing well since its launch and driving growth. The recent label expansion of the drug is expected to boost sales further.
Nu Skin's (NUS) Gross Margin Troubled by Escalated Inflation
Per the Zacks analyst, Nu Skin's gross margin is hurt by inflation. Its third-quarter adjusted gross margin contracted 250 basis points due to inflation, unfavorable product mix and currency rates.
Slowdown in Housing & Supply Chain Woes are Hurting MDC
Per the Zacks analyst, challenges associated with the U.S. housing demand and headwinds like supply-chain issues, material shortages and municipal delays are ailing MDC.
Rising Material & Freight Costs to Hurt Armstrong World (AWI)
Per the Zacks analyst, higher freight and raw material costs have been impacting Armstrong World's operating profits.
Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
Abbott Laboratories (ABT) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Pfizer Inc. (PFE) : Free Stock Analysis Report
The Charles Schwab Corporation (SCHW) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK.B) : Free Stock Analysis Report
ABB Ltd (ABB) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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Zacks Investment Research
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