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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Microsoft, Novartis, Novo Nordisk, Tesla and General Dynamics

Zacks Equity Research

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – November 14, 2019 – 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: Microsoft MSFT, Novartis NVS, Novo Nordisk NVO, Tesla TSLA and General Dynamics GD.

Here are highlights from Wednesday’s Analyst Blog:

Top Analyst Reports for Microsoft, Novartis and Novo Nordisk

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 Microsoft, Novartis and Novo Nordisk. 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 >>>

Microsoft’s shares have outperformed the S&P 500 year to date (44.8% vs. 23.7%). The Zacks analyst believes that Microsoft is benefiting from growing user base of its different applications like Office 365 commercial, Dynamics, Outlook mobile and Teams.

Moreover, Azure’s expanding customer base is a key catalyst. Microsoft’s gaming segment is performing well, primarily driven by a combination of Xbox Live, Game Pass subscriptions and Mixer, which are driving user engagement. Further, acquisitions like PlayFab and GitHub expand Microsoft’s total addressable market (TAM) and penetration.

Additionally, latest contract wins from the Department of Defense remain notable. However, projections of a moderating growth rate in commercial cloud gross margin, and OEM Pro and Windows commercial businesses is a headwind. Moreover, stiff competition from the likes of Google, Apple, and Sony is a woe.

Shares of Novartis have gained 10.6% in the past six months against Zacks Large-Cap Pharmaceuticals industry’s rise of 6.2%. The Zacks analyst believes that Novartis’ beat on earnings and sales in the third quarter, driven by the solid performance of key drugs like Cosentyx and Entresto, contribution from Zolgensma, and the Xiidra acquisition.

The increase in guidance was encouraging as well. New launches like Piqray and Beovu should further boost the company’s performance in the upcoming quarters. A strong uptake is expected particularly from Beovu as it is the first FDA approved anti-VEGF to offer greater fluid resolution as compared to Eylea.

However, price erosion in the United States has adversely impacted the generic business. Of late, Novartis has restructured its business and spun off the eye-care unit, Alcon, to become a core drug-focused company. However, pipeline setbacks and generic competition for key drugs are concerns.

Novo Nordisk’s shares have gained 13.4% over the past three months against the Zacks Biotech industry’s rise of 7.4%. The Zacks analyst believes that the company has one of the broadest diabetes portfolios in the industry.

A solid performance from Tresiba, Victoza, Ozempic, Xultophy and Saxenda drove the company’s sales in the year so far. Label expansion of Victoza continues to boost performance. Ozempic, once-weekly GLP-1, continues to gain market share.

The FDA recently approved semaglutide in tablet form under the brand name, Rybelsus. Approval of new drugs will further broaden the company’s portfolio. Shares of the company have outperformed the industry year to date.

However, lower realized prices in the Unites States, loss of exclusivity for products in hormone replacement therapy and intensifying competition within the diabetes and biopharmaceuticals markets will adversely impact sales.

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Tesla and General Dynamics.

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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 for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

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