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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: AT&T, Home Depot, Cisco, Ford and Mondelez

Zacks Equity Research
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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL –July 18, 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 AT&T T, Home Depot HD, Cisco CSCO, Ford F and Mondelez MDLZ.

Here are highlights from Tuesday’s Analyst Blog:

Top Research Reports for AT&T, Home Depot and Cisco

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 AT&T, Home Depot and Cisco. These research reports have been hand-picked from the roughly 70 reports published by our analyst team today.

Buy-rankedAT&T’s shares have decreased -9.4% in the last three months, underperforming the Zacks Wireless National industry's fall of -1.8%. AT&T is gearing up to launch the first standards-based mobile 5G services in multiple U.S. markets by the end of 2018.

The Zacks analyst thinks the company will benefit from its probable merger with Time Warner. The deal is likely to reshape the industry dynamics, creating a new media behemoth. It will enable the power packed combination of AT&T’s data and Time Warner’s content to create new kinds of online videos and sell targeted advertisements.

AT&T intends to acquire AlienVault to enhance its line of cybersecurity products designed for small and medium-sized businesses. It also inked an agreement to acquire AppNexus to augment its foothold in the digital ad sales market. AT&T’s wireline division is facing losses in access lines due to competitive pressure from voice-over-Internet protocol service providers.

Shares of Buy-ranked Home Depot have gained +30.7% over the last year, outperforming the Zacks Retail Building Products industry’s +27.8% increase. The Zacks analyst thinks that this performance is attributed to its five-year long trend of beating earnings estimates, which continued in first-quarter fiscal 2018.

Further, both the top and bottom line improved year over year in the first quarter. The company is gaining from strength in core business as well as relentless focus on affording innovative products, boosting interconnected customer experience and driving productivity. Steady housing market recovery and strong customer demand also remain tailwinds.

Going into the fiscal second quarter, the company witnessed strength in all lines of business in the first few weeks of May. Consequently, it provided an optimistic view for fiscal 2018. However, top line lagged estimates mainly due to colder-than-normal weather that led to softness in the spring season categories, particularly garden. This softness also resulted in a decline in comparable transactions.

Buy-rankedCisco's shares have outperformed the Zacks Networking industry in the past year, gaining +34.9% vs. +32.6%. Strong contribution from acquisitions, security, Infrastructure Platforms and applications drove are positives.

The Zacks analyst thinks Cisco’s expanding footprint in the rapidly growing security market presents significant growth opportunity. Strengthening collaboration portfolio which now includes Webex Teams and AI-based Accompany bodes well. Partnerships with Telenor, Apple, IBM, Microsoft and Google Cloud are positive. Divestiture of a portion of Cisco’s NDS video assets is likely to mitigate the sluggishness witnessed in other product segment.

However, weakness in switching and routing is a headwind. Ongoing transition to subscription-based model will continue to hurt the top line. Further, dampening service provider business and intense competition from peers are other concerns.

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Ford and Mondelez.

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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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Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
AT&T Inc. (T) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Ford Motor Company (F) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
The Home Depot, Inc. (HD) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Mondelez International, Inc. (MDLZ) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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