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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: BP, Total SA, Exxon Mobil, ConocoPhillips and Chevron - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: BP, Total SA, Exxon Mobil, ConocoPhillips and Chevron

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SOURCE Zacks Investment Research, Inc.

CHICAGO, May 9, 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 BP plc (NYSE:BP-Free Report), Total SA (NYSE:TOT-Free Report), Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE:XOM-Free Report), ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP-Free Report) and Chevron Corp. (NYSE:CVX-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 Thursday's Analyst Blog:

Russian Pause Sparks Big Oil

Investors betting on Big Oil got more news to cheer about on Wednesday with the Kremlin's announcement of a pause in Ukraine, which was fast moving toward a full-scale war. Although the move is viewed by many as a tactical halt, it added fuel to the bourses in general, with integrated major energy firms' stocks catching fire.

The standoff, if ended, would quell worry of integrated global majors that have substantial funds invested in and around Russia. The problem for the large-cap integrated players is that new projects usually have a long gestation period (more than five years) to perform optimally.

If Russia and Ukraine iron out their differences, the largest beneficiary would be British energy giant BP plc (NYSE:BP-Free Report), which owns almost one-fifth stake in Rosneft and accounts for a tenth of its total market cap. The markets echoed the positive sentiment and the company's shares hit a 52-week high of $51.25 during the trading session on Wednesday, before closing a notch lower at $51.02. This translates into a healthy year-over-year return of 16.1%.

With the British major on a high, the sentiment was echoed across the channel also with French integrated major Total SA (NYSE:TOT-Free Report), which returned more than 40% over the past year and also touched a 52-week high on Wednesday.

Back home, both Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE:XOM-Free Report) and ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP-Free Report) broke their 52-week highs and look to fetch more returns for shareholders. The Russian recess comes at a time when integrated majors, with their focus on shareholder returns, are reminding investors of their resilience in volatile market dynamics.

Exxon is currently developing and operating the Sakhalin-1 project with close to one-third stake in it – one of the largest foreign investments in Russia. The largest U.S. oil and gas company generates almost 6% of its production from Russia.

ConocoPhilips also has an equally owned JV christened Polar Lights with Rosneft. The remaining member of the Big Oil club in the U.S., Chevron Corp. (NYSE:CVX-Free Report), also stands to gain from the pause in the Ukraine impasse, as its has a 15% stake in the Caspian Pipeline Consortium which transports Caspian oil from Tengiz field to Novorossiysk-2 Marine Terminal on Russia's Black Sea coast.

As such, we expect the integrated big oil players – all carrying a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) – to provide energy investors a safer avenue to growth. All six supermajors provide an additional cushion of dividend yield that averages 3.2% and far outweighs the average Dow Jones Industrial Average yield of 2.2%.

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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