Walt Disney Co. (DIS:US) rose to an all-time closing high after Bank of America Corp. recommended buying the stock because fiscal 2013 profit estimates may be too low.
Disney added 3.1 percent to $49.35 at the close in New York, the biggest gain in four months. The shares have advanced 32 percent this year, re-establishing the record high most recently on July 2.
Bank of America’s earnings estimate of $3.62 a share for the year that starts in October is 15 cents higher than the average on Wall Street, analyst Jessica Reif Cohen said in a research note. Profit may be driven higher by the company’s theme parks, improving film studio and interactive unit, and cable networks, she said.
In June, the company opened Cars Land at California Adventure in Anaheim, California, after raising theme-park ticket prices. Cars Land, along with lower launch costs at the parks unit, may add 10 cents in fiscal 2013, Cohen said.
“Marvel’s the Avengers,” the movie based on comic-book heroes such as The Hulk, Iron Man and Thor, has generated $613.7 million in U.S. and Canadian ticket sales for Disney since May 4 and $1.46 billion worldwide, according to researcher Box Office Mojo. The film, third in revenue all-time to James Cameron’s “Avatar” and “Titanic,” countered “John Carter,” which lost $200 million for Disney this year.
“Avengers” may add 11 cents a share to Disney’s profit this year, Cohen said. She told clients to buy the stock, increasing her recommendation from “neutral.”
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