The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights:LNB Bancorp, GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes,Boeing, Copa Holdings and Southwest Airlines

CHICAGO, March 31, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- 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 the LNB Bancorp Inc. (Nasdaq: LNBB-Free Report), GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes S.A. (NYSE: GOL-Free Report), Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA-Free Report), Copa Holdings S.A. (NYSE: CPA-Free Report) and Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV-Free Report).

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

Here are highlights from Friday's Analyst Blog:

LNB Bancorp Upped to Strong Buy

On Mar 28, Zacks Investment Research upgraded LNB Bancorp Inc. (Nasdaq: LNBB-Free Report) to a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

Why the Upgrade?

LNB Bancorp has been witnessing rising earnings estimates on the back of strong fourth-quarter 2013 results, steady organic growth and superior capital position. For the current year, year-over year earnings growth estimate is 27.87%. Further, the company recorded a solid return of 9.6% year-to-date.

LNB Bancorp reported its fourth-quarter earnings on Jan 30 with earnings per share of 16 cents. However, it missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate as well as the prior-year quarter earnings of 17 cents by 5.9%.

Decent results for the reported quarter were primarily driven by improved credit quality and higher loans and deposits. Total nonperforming assets declined 22.6% year over year, while provision for loan losses decreased 43.1% on a year-over-year basis.

Net loans ascended 2.3% year over year, while total deposits jumped 4.6%. This reflected organic growth of the company.

On the flip side, 4% rise in non-interest expenses, 3.6% decline in non-interest income and 1.7% decrease in net interest income was recorded.

For 2014, the Zacks Consensus Estimate increased 4.0% to 78 cents per share, over the last 60 days. For 2015, the Zacks Consensus Estimate advanced 5.6% to 95 cents per share over the same time period.

GOL Linhas Pursues Brazil-to-Miami Route

Low cost airline GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes S.A. (NYSE: GOL-Free Report) is seeking to expand its operations between Brazil and the U.S. The carrier has made a formal request to Brazilian Civil Aviation Agency (ANAC) to run a regular service between Campinas (Brazil) and Miami (U.S.), with a scheduled stop at Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic).

The Brazilian carrier wants to provide the service on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays and plans to use The Boeing Co.'s (NYSE: BA-Free Report) B-737 next generation aircraft for the service. GOL expects to start the operations by the end of Jul 2014, provided it gets approval from ANAC.

The Brazilian city of Campinas is located in the Sao Paolo state and together with its metropolitan area, has a total population of 2.23 million. On the other hand Miami, which is also known as the ''Capital of Latin America" has a large Hispanic population. We believe Miami will not only increase GOL's U.S. exposure, but will also draw many tourists from Campinas to the "Magic City", which is famous for its beaches.

GOL is concerned that higher-than-expected fuel prices will increase its expenses in 2014 and eventually affect operating profit. Other risks, such as competition, subdued global economy, increased aircraft maintenance costs and high debt could affect the company's performance.

However, Brazil will host the 2014 football world cup and 2016 summer Olympics, two of the biggest sporting extravaganzas. The events are expected to attract around 600,000 international and 3 million domestic visitors this year, presenting a big opportunity for passenger carriers like GOL.

GOL recently declared mixed financial results for the fourth quarter of 2013, with the top line beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate, while the bottom line missing the same. The quarter's results were hurt by a decline in domestic supply, record jet fuel prices and depreciation of Brazilian real against the dollar.

GOL – which operates with other industry players like Copa Holdings S.A. (NYSE: CPA-Free Report) – has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked stocks within this sector include Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV-Free Report), which sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock 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.

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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 http://www.zacks.com/performance for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

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