5. Estee Lauder Companies (EL) engages in the manufacture and marketing of quality skin care, makeup, fragrance and hair care products. The company's products have exposure in over 150 countries under the brands Estee Lauder, Aramis, Clinique, Prescriptives, Lab Series, Origins, M-A-C, Bobbi Brown, Tommy Hilfiger, Kiton, La Mer, Donna Karan, Aveda and Jo Malone.
Of the 19 analysts covering the stock, 58% recommend a buy and the rest rate a hold. The stock's average 12-month price target is $127.33, about 15% higher than the current price, according to a Bloomberg consensus.
Net sales for the first quarter of 2012 were reported at $2.48 billion, an 18% increase compared to the same period fiscal year 2011. Net earnings stood at $278.6 million, up 46% from $191.1 million last year. During the quarter, operating margin increased by 310 basis points.The company's sales guidance for 2012 is between 8% and 10%, at constant currency and earnings per share before restructuring charges to $4.25 to $4.45. EL is also preparing to implement SAP in over 25 business units over the next two years. Aramis and Designer Fragrances, a division of the company, has entered into a multi-year agreement with Tory Burch for an exclusive worldwide license for the latter's fragrance business.
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