The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Symmetry Medical, Johnson & Johnson, Stryker, Zimmer Holdings and MarkWest Energy Partners

   The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Symmetry Medical, Johnson & Johnson,
            Stryker, Zimmer Holdings and MarkWest Energy Partners

PR Newswire

CHICAGO, Nov. 8, 2012

CHICAGO, Nov. 8, 2012 /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 Symmetry Medical, Inc.
(NYSE:SMA), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), Stryker Corporation (NYSE:SYK),
Zimmer Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:ZMH) and MarkWest Energy Partners L.P. (NYSE:MWE).

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Here are highlights from Wednesday's Analyst Blog:

Symmetry Surgical Expands in Europe

Symmetry Surgical, a subsidiary of orthopedic implants and instruments maker
Symmetry Medical, Inc. (NYSE:SMA), recently signed a distribution agreement
with a leading medical device distributor, MTG Medical Technologies (MTG). Per
the terms of the deal, MTG will distribute Symmetry Surgical's surgical
instruments product portfolio in Europe.

MTG, a subsidiary of Neuro-Competence, distributes cutting-edge yet affordable
medical devices to hospitals located across Germany, Austria, Switzerland,
Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia. Given MTG's strong presence in these
countries, the partnership will enable Symmetry Surgical to grow its customer
base in the European market.

The distribution agreement is in line with Symmetry Surgical's focus on
worldwide expansion of its business inclusive of all brands under the
erstwhile Codman Surgical Instruments and SSi. The company further plans to
expand into other key European countries to attract healthy revenue
opportunities.

Since Symmetry Medical's core Original Equipment Manufacturing ("OEM")
Solutions business is facing declining capital spending, procedural and
pricing pressure from the weak global orthopedic market, the company is
focused on expanding its smaller Symmetry Surgical business.

In the last reported third quarter 2012 results, revenues from the smaller
Symmetry Surgical unit increased more than twofold to $24.8 million in the
quarter, buoyed by the Olsen Medical and Codman & Shurtleff, Inc. acquisition,
which contributed roughly $13.7 million to the division's sales.

Earlier, in October, Symmetry Surgical had entered into a distribution
agreement with Canada-based AMT Electrosurgery Inc. to distribute its entire
portfolio of medical devices in Canada. In June, Symmetry Surgical had
completed a distribution agreement with Japan Surgical Specialty ('JSS')
Corporation to sell its products in the Japanese market. The company had also
completed a distribution agreement to directly distribute its offerings in
Australia and New Zealand.

Symmetry Medical is the largest OEM provider of implants and related surgical
instruments and cases to orthopedic devices manufacturers. Its major customers
include Johnson & Johnson's (NYSE:JNJ) DePuy, Stryker Corporation (NYSE:SYK)
and Zimmer Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:ZMH).

Currently, we have a Neutral recommendation on the stock, which retains a
short-term Zacks #3 Rank (Hold).

MarkWest Seals Deal with Antero

Denver, Colorado-based MarkWest Energy Partners L.P. (NYSE:MWE) has agreed to
render processing, fractionation, and marketing services to Antero Resources
for its liquid acreage in Utica Shale play.

MarkWest will execute the transaction through the joint venture –– MarkWest
Utica EMG, L.L.C. aka MarkWest Utica –– formed with private-equity group The
Energy & Minerals Group ("EMG"). The operations of the joint venture include
the development of natural gas gathering, transportation and processing and
natural gas liquid (NGL) transportation, fractionation, as well as marketing
infrastructure in the Utica shale in eastern Ohio.

Per the agreement, MarkWest Utica will set up a natural gas processing unit in
Noble County, Ohio with an interim capacity of 45 million cubic feet per day
(MMcf/d). The facility is expected to be fully completed in the second quarter
of 2013.

The joint venture will complement this unit with a cryogenic gas processing
facility of 200 MMcf/d capacity that will likely come on-line by the third
quarter of 2013. A third 200 MMcf/d cryogenic processing plant will also be
developed toward the end of 2013.

MarkWest Utica also intends to build a NGL gathering system as well as a
fractionation and marketing complex in Harrison County, Ohio.

All the facilities together will be Utica Shale's largest fractionation and
marketing complex that is slated to be entirely operational in the first
quarter of 2014. The total unit will be capable of providing about 100,000
barrels per day (Bbl/d) of C2+ fractionation.

This new complex is designed to be well connected with the Marcellus Shale
where MarkWest enjoys strong exposure and position. This Harrison facility
along with the complex of Houston will form the biggest fractionation
complexes in the northeast that will offer high-class operating flexibility
and consistency, as well as market access.

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