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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights:SVB Financial Group, John Bean Technologies, Active Power, Lennox International and Broadwind Energy

CHICAGO, April 1, 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 SVB Financial Group (Nasdaq:SIVB-Free Report), John Bean Technologies Corporation (NYSE:JBT-Free Report), Active Power Inc. (Nasdaq:ACPW-Free Report), Lennox International, Inc. (NYSE:LII-Free Report) and Broadwind Energy, Inc. (Nasdaq:BWEN-Free Report).

Zacks Investment Research, Inc., www.zacks.com

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

Here are highlights from Monday's Analyst Blog:

SVB Financial Upped to Strong Buy

On Mar 29, Zacks Investment Research upgraded SVB Financial Group (Nasdaq:SIVB-Free Report) to a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

Why the Upgrade?

SVB Financial has been witnessing rising earnings estimates on the back of strong fourth-quarter 2013 results, which included improved revenues, growth in deposits & loans and a steady capital position. The long-term expected earnings growth rate for the company is 10.25%. Further, SVB Financial recorded a solid year-to-date return of 22.04%.

SVB Financial reported its fourth-quarter earnings on Jan 23 with earnings per share of $1.27 beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 14.41%. In all the quarters of 2013, the company scripted positive earnings surprises, with average earnings beat for the year at 7.25%.

Robust results were primarily driven by strong loan growth and increased revenues. Yet these positives were partially offset by rising operating expenses.

For 2014, management expects non-GAAP operating expenses to rise in the mid-single digits and it expects the net interest income growth in low double digits. The company also anticipates the average deposit balance to grow in the mid-double digits and the average loan balance to grow in mid-to-high double digits.

For 2014, the Zacks Consensus Estimate increased 6.2% to $5.44 per share over the last 60 days. For 2015, the Zacks Consensus Estimate advanced 2.9% to $5.61 per share over the same time period.

Stock to Avoid: John Bean Technologies

Zacks Investment Research downgraded John Bean Technologies Corporation (NYSE:JBT-Free Report) to a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) on Mar 29, 2014. Going by the Zacks model, companies with a Zacks Rank #5 have strong chances of performing worse than the broader market.

Why the Downgrade?

John Bean Technologies failed to impress its shareholders or the market at large as evidenced from a nearly 3% fall in its share price since the company reported its fourth-quarter 2013 results on Mar 4, 2014. A snapshot of the quarter's results is provided below:

Adjusted earnings per share from continuing operations were 54 cents, down from 64 cents recorded in the year-ago quarter. However, the bottom line came in ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 44 cents.

Revenues generated in the quarter were $288 million, down 1.6% year over year. The decline was due primarily to a 5.1% fall in revenues from the JBT AeroTech segment, offset partially by a 1.0% increase in revenues from the JBT FoodTech segment. Cost of sales increased 0.3%, while gross margin was down 140 basis points.

For first-quarter 2014, John Bean Technologies expects earnings per share to be slightly above the break-even level but much lower than the 14 cents recorded in the year-ago quarter.

Weak results in the fourth quarter as well as a poor guidance for first-quarter 2014 triggered downward revisions in earnings estimates. In the last 30 days, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for John Bean Technologies has decreased 9.5% to $1.43 for 2014 and 16.1% to $1.62 for 2015.

Other Stocks to Consider

John Bean Technologies Corporation has a market capitalization of $876 million. Some better-ranked stocks in the machinery industry include Active Power Inc. (Nasdaq:ACPW-Free Report), Lennox International, Inc. (NYSE:LII-Free Report) and Broadwind Energy, Inc. (Nasdaq:BWEN-Free Report), all of which carry 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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Zacks.com is a property of Zacks Investment Research, Inc., which was formed in 1978. The later formation of the Zacks Rank, a proprietary stock picking system; continues to outperform the market by nearly a 3 to 1 margin. The best way to unlock the profitable stock recommendations and market insights of Zacks Investment Research is through our free daily email newsletter; Profit from the Pros.  In short, it's your steady flow of Profitable ideas GUARANTEED to be worth your time! Register for your free subscription to Profit from the Pros.

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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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