CHICAGO, April 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Zacks Equity Research highlights Accuray Inc. (Nasdaq: ARAY) as the Bull of the Day and Everest Re (NYSE: RE) the Bear of the Day. In addition, Zacks Equity Research provides analysis on McDonald's (NYSE: MCD), Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) and Manpower Inc. (NYSE: MAN).
Here is a synopsis of all five stocks:
We upgrade our recommendation on Accuray Inc. (Nasdaq: ARAY) to Outperform following our assessment of its healthy second-quarter fiscal 2011 results and increased visibility on the stock. Earnings per share of $0.07 comfortably beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $0.02.
The company swung to profit in the quarter as a decline in operating expenses offset lower revenues. Accuray continues to enjoy strong demand for its CyberKnife robotic radiosurgery as reflected by increasing number of patients treated with the system.
Moreover, the company is expected to benefit from the recent recovery in hospital capital spending. We are also upbeat about the compelling prospect in
radiation oncology rendered by the company's impending acquisition of rival TomoTherapy.
We are downgrading our recommendation on shares of Everest Re (NYSE: RE) as we believe that its top-line growth will remain somewhat restricted due to the expected decline in the casualty line as a result of tough market conditions. Additionally, the potential for future reserve additions remains a challenge.
Everest estimates its first quarter 2011 pre-tax losses to range between $140 million and $210 million, owing to the deadly February 2011 New Zealand earthquake. The Australian floods will likely cause a gross loss of another $45 million to Everest Re, which writes 7% of its Reinsurance business in the Asia/Australia region.
While the company expects its property line to post growth, the casualty line is expected to continue to decline due to the ongoing tough market conditions. The extent of increased competition and its effect on rates, terms and conditions varies widely by market and coverage, but are most prevalent in the U.S. casualty insurance and reinsurance markets.
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Teens, regardless of gender, have had a very hard time of it in this recession. Just go to a McDonald's (NYSE: MCD) and you will see this for yourself. Normally the blemishes you see on the cashier's face is acne, not wrinkles and age spots as is the case now.
Things got even worse for teens in March. The teen unemployment rate rose to 24.5% from 23.9% in February, but is down from 26.0% a year ago. Things are not quite as bad is they sound (and yes, they are a disaster, but the monthly changes were not quite as bad as a 0.6% increase would indicate). The participation rate rose to 34.1% from 33.5% in February, but is still well below the 35.8% rate a year ago.
The percentage of teens that actually have a job rose to 25.8% from 25.5% in February, but this is down from 26.5% a year ago. While for the most part the earnings from teen jobs tend to go towards clothes from Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) and other teen clothing stores, for many it is a significant part of paying for college. Also when teens work, they learn important job skills, such as the importance of actually showing up, and doing so on time. The extremely low levels of teens working is not a good sign for the future.
Manpower Steady at Neutral
Manpower Inc.'s (NYSE: MAN) comprehensive range of services makes it a truly global staffing firm. The company provides services for the entire employment and business cycle, including permanent, temporary and contract recruitment, employee assessment and selection, training, outplacement, outsourcing and consulting.
The company's brand value and strong global network provide a competitive advantage to the company and reinforce its dominant position in the market. Manpower leverages a strong network of about 4,000 offices spanning 82 countries and serving approximately 400,000 clients. The company benefits from growth prospects in under-penetrated staffing markets.
Manpower posted better-than-expected fourth-quarter 2010 results that topped the Zacks Consensus Estimate on the heels of revenue growth across all geographies. Europe performed remarkably well. The quarterly earnings of 66 cents per share outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 61 cents and rose 40.4% from 47 cents in the prior-year quarter.
Manpower now expects first-quarter 2011 earnings in the range of 26 cents to 34 cents a share.
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