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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Tesla Motors, 3D Systems, Hasbro, Hershey and Hewlett-Packard

CHICAGO, Feb. 19, 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 Tesla Motors, Inc. (Nasdaq:TSLA-Free Report), 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD-Free Report), Hasbro, Inc. (Nasdaq:HAS-Free Report), Hershey Company (NYSE:HSY-Free Report) and Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ-Free Report).

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

Here are highlights from Tuesday's Analyst Blog:

Will Tesla (TSLA) Beat Estimates This Quarter?

Tesla Motors, Inc. (Nasdaq:TSLA-Free Report) is set to report fourth-quarter 2013 results on Feb 19. In the trailing four quarters it posted an average surprise of +35.30%. Let's see how things are shaping up for this announcement.

Growth Factors This Quarter

Tesla recently revealed that vehicle sales in the fourth quarter of 2013 were 20% higher than estimated. The company sold and delivered 6,900 vehicles in the quarter, an improvement on the guidance of 6,000 units. This is the highest sales recorded by Tesla.

The demand for Tesla's cars remains strong due to robust performances and impressive designs. However, the electric carmaker is investing significantly in product development and expansion of its supercharger network, resulting in high research and development (R&D) and selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses. R&D and SG&A expenses are expected to sequentially increase 25% and 20% respectively, in the fourth quarter of 2013.

Earnings Whispers?

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Tesla is likely to beat earnings this quarter. That is because a stock needs to have both a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1, 2 or 3 for this to happen. That is not the case here, as you will see below.

Zacks ESP: The Earnings ESP, which represents the difference between the Most Accurate Estimate and the Zacks Consensus Estimate, is 0.00%. This is because both the Most Accurate Estimate and Zacks Consensus Estimate are currently at 4 cents.

Zacks Rank #1: Tesla's Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) when combined with a 0.00% ESP, makes surprise prediction difficult.

We caution against stocks with a Zacks Rank #4 or 5 (Sell-rated stocks) going into the earnings announcement, especially when the company is seeing negative estimate revisions momentum.

3D Systems to Join Forces with Hasbro

After chocolates, 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD-Free Report) is now planning to transform the play experience for children through its recently announced collaboration with Hasbro, Inc. (Nasdaq:HAS-Free Report). On Feb 14, both 3D Systems and Hasbro planned to join forces to explore and develop innovative play experiences for kids through 3D printing. Following this news, shares of 3D Systems surged 4.5% on the same day to close at $73.83.  

Hasbro is a well-known play company committed to drive the fundamental need to play in children and families through the creative expression of the company's world class brand portfolio.

This joint-development agreement will see two leaders in their specific markets coming together. Through this association, Hasbro intends to leverage its renowned brands and retail presence with 3DS's powerful 3D printing portfolio to redefine play. These companies plan to comprehensively co-develop and commercialize innovative play printers and platforms by the end of 2014.

3D Systems is a leading provider of 3D printing centric design-to-manufacturing solutions including 3D printers, print materials and cloud-sourced on-demand custom parts for professionals and consumers alike, in materials like plastics, metals, ceramics and edibles. Its comprehensive range of 3D printers is the industry's benchmark for production-grade manufacturing in aerospace, automotive, patient specific medical device and a variety of consumer, electronic and fashion accessories.

3D Systems' approach to expand its business through its strategic growth initiative has been quite impressive. Driven by this initiative, in the last-reported third quarter of 2013, the company clocked organic growth of 30% year over year and overall revenue growth of 50% year over year. Prior to this deal, in Jan 2014, 3D Systems and The Hershey Company (NYSE:HSY-Free Report) had announced that both companies intend to join forces to explore and develop innovative 3D-printed chocolates as well as non-chocolate products.

3D Systems currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). However, a better-ranked stock in the same industry is Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ-Free Report), carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (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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