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Stamps.com, Overstock.com, Cisco, Seagate and Canon as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day

For Immediate Release         

Chicago, IL – March 22, 2018 – Zacks Equity Research highlights Stamps.com STMP as the Bull of the Day and Overstock.com OSTK as the Bear of the Day. In addition, Zacks Equity Research provides analysis onCisco Systems, Inc. CSCO, Seagate Technology PLC STX and Canon, Inc. CAJ.

Here is a synopsis of all three stocks:

Bull of the Day:                                              

Stamps.com, a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), is a leading provider of Internet-based postage services. Stamps.com's service for postage online enables small businesses, enterprises, and consumers to print U.S. Postal Service-approved postage with just a PC, printer and Internet connection, right from their home or office. The Company targets its services to small businesses and home offices, and currently has PC Postage partnerships with Microsoft, EarthLink, HP, NCR, Office Depot, the U.S. Postal Service and others. Stamps.com provides easy, convenient and cost-effective Internet-based services for mailing or shipping letters, packages or parcels.

Recent Earnings Data

In the company’s most recent earnings report, it easily beat both the Zacks consensus earnings and revenue estimates for the 14th consecutive quarter.  Earnings grew by +73.4% while revenues improved by +24.5% due to impressive performances in both the Mailing & Shipping, and Customized Postage segments.  The mailing & shipping segment saw revenues grow by +26% while the customized postage segment produced revenue growth of +9%.  Another positive for the quarter was higher than anticipated service fees, and shipping volumes.  

Looking Forward

Going into 2018, management guided revenues between $530-560 million above the previous consensus of $532 million.  Further, STMP guided pro forma EPS in a range between $8.80-8.90, above the consensus of $8.53.  The increase in guidance was due to increased exposure of international markets, and customer acquisitions.  Another tailwind for the company is their elevated focus on shipping with e-commerce merchants.  
Management’s Take

According to Ken McBride, Chairman and CEO, “We are pleased with our fourth quarter and fiscal 2017 financial performance. We achieved strong financial results driven by exceptional performance in our shipping business. We believe we are well positioned for 2018 and we remain excited about our long-term business opportunities.”

Bear of the Day:

Overstock.com, a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) is an online closeout retailer offering discount, brand-name merchandise for sale over the Internet. Their merchandise offerings include bed-and-bath goods, kitchenware, watches, jewelry, electronics, sporting goods and designer accessories.

Recent Earnings Data

The company reported earnings on March 15th, where they significantly missed both the Zacks consensus earnings and revenue estimates.  On the earnings front, the company posted a loss of -$2.71 per share compared to the estimate of -$0.03.  Revenues also came in way below expectations at $456 million vs. the consensus estimate of $526 million.  On a year over year basis, OSTK saw declines in both revenues -13%, and gross profit -12%.  To add to the bad news, sales and marketing expenses grew by +13%, and G&A/Technology expenses rose by +8%.

Management stated that the losses in its ecommerce business was due to increased competition from Wayfair.

Management’s Take

According to Patrick Byrne, CEO, “We announced on our last earnings call that we had engaged Guggenheim to consider strategic alternatives, one of them being a sale of our ecommerce assets. This work is ongoing and we will provide an update when appropriate. That said, our philosophy has always been to run every asset like we intend to own it forever and our strategy discussion will be framed in that mindset.

“Our ecommerce business had its second annual pre-tax loss ($25 million) in nine years faced with a competitor called Wayfair running a pre-tax loss of $244 million for 2017. In fact, in the last four years, while our retail business has had pre-tax income of $30 million, Wayfair has lost $663 million: this is creating no small amount of margin compression. Because I do not want to watch this play out over years, I believe it is time for us to respond in kind. Thus, I am announcing that we are for the first time adopting the classic internet "growth strategy" I have previously eschewed: high growth, negative GAAP net income, funded out of our negative cash conversion cycle. We have already turned on the jets, and will demonstrate this year that our growth engine is far more efficient.”

Additional content:

3 Stocks for Dividend Investors to Buy Now

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By limiting our search to companies in our “Computer and Technology” sector with Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) or better rankings, we can ensure that we are finding the highest quality stocks to buy right now. Throw in your preferred dividend yield and voila—the best tech stocks for dividend investors to target!

Check out three of these stocks to buy now:

1. Cisco Systems, Inc.

Cisco is a worldwide leader in the information technology industry. The company develops and sells networking hardware, telecommunications equipment, and other high-technology services and products. Cisco is currently sporting a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) and just reported better-than-expected earnings and revenues last month. Management also provided positive top-line guidance for the current quarter. Cisco is using its current strength to reward investors and currently provides a dividend yield of about 2.61%.

2. Seagate Technology PLC

Seagate is a global leader in hard drive manufacturing. It offers a range of disk drive products for the enterprise, client computing, and client non-computing market applications. Seagate is currently sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and an “A” grade for Value in our Style Scores system. The firm is currently generating a staggering $6.78 in cash per share on the back of 32% cash flow growth. Seagate takes advantage of its strong cash position by offering investors a dividend of 4.21%, making it one of the most attractive income options in the entire technology sector.

3. Canon, Inc.

Canon is an industry leader in professional and consumer imaging equipment and information systems. The stock is currently holding a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), as well as an “A” grade for Growth and a “B” grade for Value. Canon is generating cash flow growth of nearly 30% and sports an impressive RoE of 9%. Meanwhile, the company brings in about $4.28 in cash per share and sports a Debt/Equity ratio of just 0.16. Canon also recently crushed our Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings by more than 12%. The imaging equipment offers a 3.78% dividend yield right now.

Want more market analysis from this author? Make sure to follow @Ryan_McQueeney on Twitter!

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