Zacks All Star Analysts Portfolio Highlights: Diamond Offshore, Helix Energy, Marriott Int'l and Rowan Cos.

Zacks.com just released its latest additions and deletions to its proprietary All Star Analyst portfolio. Members on this exclusive list include Diamond Offshore Drilling, Inc. (NYSE: DO), Helix Energy Solutions (NYSE: HLX), Marriott International, Inc. (NYSE: MAR) and Rowan Companies, Inc. (NYSE: RDC). View the entire list of stocks on the All Star Analyst portfolio at http://at.zacks.com/?id=510

This exclusive portfolio represents all stocks with a Strong Buy rating from at least four analysts with a 5-Star All Star ranking. These are the brokerage analysts whose stock recommendations proved to be the most profitable for investors. Since July 2002, this portfolio has generated an annualized return of 7.53%. Here is a synopsis of why these stocks are in the All Star Analysts Portfolio:

Diamond Offshore Drilling, Inc. (NYSE: DO) will report its second-quarter results next week on Jul 26. The contract drilling services company remains a fixture on the All Star Analyst Portfolio. For the first quarter, earnings per share of $1.64 advanced from last years $1.06 and bettered the consensus by 11.6%. Revenues reached $608.2 million, versus $447.7 million a year earlier. According to Zacks Research Digest, analysts believe that the key positive in DOs story is its strong leverage to the current cyclical upturn in demand for drilling services by oil and natural gas producers.

Helix Energy Solutions (NYSE: HLX) subsidiary, Energy Resource Technology GOM, reported a second discovery in the Gulf of Mexico earlier this week, and tests confirm the presence of high quality oil in a single sand body. Furthermore, preliminary analysis indicates reserve potential of around 50 bcfe. First production from the Danny exploratory well is expected in the second half of 2008. Meanwhile, the company is gearing up for its second quarter report in early August. Helix is an international offshore energy company that provides development solutions and other key life of field services to the open energy market and its own oil and gas business unit.

Marriott International, Inc. (NYSE: MAR) reported second-quarter adjusted earnings of 57 cents per share, which beat the Wall Street consensus by approximately 7.6%. Revenue advanced 11% from last year and RevPAR for its worldwide systemwide comparable properties increased 7.5%. The company stated that transient demand was strong and strengthened among leisure travelers. The companys outlook was disappointing to some of the Street, but Marriott remains one of the All Stars favorite names in hotels. According to Zacks Research Digest, analysts appreciate Marriotts differentiated business model, strong portfolio of brands, robust pipeline of unit growth and accelerating RevPar growth rates.

Rowan Companies, Inc. (NYSE: RDC) is scheduled to report its second-quarter results on Aug 2. In its first quarter, the company announced that revenues reached a record $462.3 million, compared to $410.9 million sequentially and $299.8 million year over year. Furthermore, earnings per share improved on a year-over-year basis. The major provider of international and domestic contract drilling services remains a member of the All Star Analyst Portfolio. According to Zacks Research Digest, analysts believe, with high rig utilization, the earnings outlook for the next two years is solid as the global jackup market continues to tighten and day rates increase further.

Discover all the current All Star Analyst rankings and top analyst recommendations at http://at.zacks.com/?id=511

About Zacks All Star Analyst Survey

To learn which brokerage analysts are the best in their field and what stocks they're recommending today, see the Zacks All Star Analyst survey. This exclusive survey, created with Fortune Magazine, reveals the "Best-of-Breed" brokerage analysts. They are the select group of winners from the universe of brokerage analysts - the ones who consistently beat the street - the few you should be following now. Visit the Zacks All Star Survey to find the best analysts and their top stock recommendations at http://at.zacks.com/?id=512

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