The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Lululemon, Apple, Coach, Tiffany and Gap PR Newswire CHICAGO, Dec. 7, 2012 CHICAGO, Dec. 7, 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 Lululemon (Nasdaq:LULU), Apple (Nasdaq:AAPL), Coach (NYSE:COH), Tiffany (NYSE:TIF) and Gap (NYSE:GPS). (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20101027/ZIRLOGO) Get the most recent insight from Zacks Equity Research with the free Profit from the Pros newsletter: http://at.zacks.com/?id=5513 Here are highlights from Thursday's Analyst Blog: Claims Reassure Ahead of Friday Report We have another reassuring read on the nation's labor market through a material drop in the weekly Jobless Claims data, which sets us up for the November non-farm payroll numbers coming out tomorrow morning. This indicates that the recent weak weakness in the labor market was mostly due to the effects of Sandy. Elsewhere, the European Central Bank meeting produced what the market was expecting – no changes to interest rates. But the overriding issue for the market remains the unresolved 'Fiscal Cliff' debate, and there is no substantive development on that front at this stage. The opening positions from both sides appear to provide enough room for some sort of a compromise in the coming days. But the bottom line is that there is no 'fresh' initiative on either side to bridge the gap. Jobless Claims dropped 25K last week to 370K. The four-week average, which smooths out the week-to-week volatility, dropped by 2.3K to 408K. The Jobless Claims data is not entirely where it was before Sandy distorted it (it was in the 360K vicinity before the storm), but the storm's effects are steadily dissipating. Overall though, the labor market appears to be in the same shape where it has been in the pre-Sandy months, with weekly jobless claims in the 350K to 400K range. The monthly jobs numbers coming out Friday morning will also likely confirm what we saw from the ADP jobs report on Wednesday. Adjusting for Sandy, the average monthly jobs rate likely remains in the 150K neighborhood at present. That has been the pace consistently this year. In corporate news, Lululemon (Nasdaq:LULU) came out with better-than-expected results for the third quarter, but its guidance for the coming quarter raise doubts about the sustainability of its growth trajectory. The retailer of high-end yoga pants and other women's athletic apparel guided towards same-store sales growth in the 'high single digits' in the fourth quarter, which is a material climb-down from the red-hot growth pace in recent quarters. Lululemon's sales per square foot of retail space has been in comparable territory to such iconic brands as Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL ), Coach (NYSE: COH ) and Tiffany (NYSE: TIF ). The high-end specialty retailer had the market all to itself for a while, but Gap (NYSE: GPS ) has been making a determined foray into that attractive market through its Athleta brand. The location of many Athleta stores in close proximity to Lululemon's may be just a coincidence, but there is no doubt that Gap is targeting the same audience that has loyally followed Lululemon thus far. Want more from Zacks Equity Research? Subscribe to the free Profit from the Pros newsletter: http://at.zacks.com/?id=5515. 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. Zacks "Profit from the Pros" e-mail newsletter provides highlights of the latest analysis from Zacks Equity Research. Subscribe to this free newsletter today: http://at.zacks.com/?id=5517 About Zacks Zacks.com is a property of Zacks Investment Research, Inc., which was formed in 1978 by Leon Zacks. As a PhD from MIT Len knew he could find patterns in stock market data that would lead to superior investment results. Amongst his many accomplishments was the formation of his proprietary stock picking system; the Zacks Rank, which 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. 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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Lululemon, Apple, Coach, Tiffany and Gap
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