The Zacks Rank #1 list is a short-term stock rating system that has generated a 32% annual return since 1988. Here are a few of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) notable stock upgrades:
Chicago-based Sara Lee Corporation (SLE) has been upgraded to a Zacks Rank #1 today, shortly after it posted a 20+% positive earnings surprise in its latest quarterly report. There is some evidence that estimate revisions are going up for the company, which is one of the main factors in a company achieving Zacks Rank #1 status. Sara Lee traded up for the day, currently 1.33% above this morning's opening price.
Consumer non-durables companies have long been considered a safe haven in times of turbulence in the markets. The company has three global businesses: Food and Beverage, Intimates and Underwear, and Household Products. It manufactures and markets products of exceptional quality and value under leading, well-known brand names such as Sara Lee, Earth Grains, Jimmy Dean, Douwe Egberts, Chock Full o' Nuts, Hanes and Playtex.
Natural gas company Williams Partners (WPZ) also has been newly made a Zacks Rank #1 stock today. Its earnings surprise was modest when the company's report came out at the beginning of the month, but a major brokerage has recently upgraded the stock to a Buy. Gas prices going up as winter heating season begins likely added to a positive seasonal outlook.
Through its subsidiaries, WPZ primarily finds, produces, gathers, processes and transports natural gas. The company also manages a wholesale power business. Williams' operations are concentrated in the Pacific Northwest, Rocky Mountains, Gulf Coast, Southern California and Eastern Seaboard.
Finally, the Zacks Rank #1 has additionally been bestowed upon specialty retailer Skechers USA (SKX), which was also recently spotlighted as a top Value pick earlier this week from zacks.com analyst Roopak Chakravarty. In late October, the company delivered a nearly 30% positive earnings surprise, and we have seen some upward-moving revisions from brokers recently.
Skechers USA, Inc. designs and markets branded contemporary casual, active, rugged and lifestyle footwear for men, women and children. The company sells its products to department stores such as Nordstrom, Macy's, Dillards, Robinson's-May and JC Penney and specialty retailers such as Genesco's Journeys and Jarman chains, The Venator Group's Foot Locker and Lady Foot Locker chains, Pacific Sunwear and Footaction U.S.A.