Zacks Investment Research Upgrades KAR Auction Services Inc. (KAR) to “Hold”

KAR Auction Services Inc. (NYSE:KAR) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.
According to Zacks, “KAR Auction Services, Inc., through its subsidiaries, operates as a used vehicle and salvage auto auction company in North America. The company operates in three segments: ADESA, IAAI, and AFC. The ADESA segment provides whole car auctions and related services to commercial fleet operators, financial institutions, rental car companies, used vehicle dealers, vehicle manufacturers and their captive finance companies, and franchised and independent used vehicle dealers. This segment also provides value-added ancillary services, such as inspections, storage, transportation, reconditioning and titling, and other administrative services. The IAAI segment offers salvage vehicle auctions and related services. The AFC segment offers short-term and inventory-secured financing, known as floorplan financing, to independent used vehicle dealers. KAR Auction Services, Inc. is headquartered in Carmel, Indiana. “
Several other brokerages have also recently issued reports on KAR. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of KAR Auction Services in a research report on Wednesday, August 3rd. Jefferies Group lifted their target price on KAR Auction Services from $47.00 to $50.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 4th. Macquarie reaffirmed an “outperform” rating on shares of KAR Auction Services in a research report on Monday, August 29th. Finally, Susquehanna initiated coverage on KAR Auction Services in a research report on Friday, August 26th. They set a “positive” rating and a $50.00 target price on the stock. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $43.71.

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Shares of KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) traded up 2.59% on Tuesday, reaching $41.55. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,422,254 shares. KAR Auction Services has a 52-week low of $31.54 and a 52-week high of $44.10. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $41.83 and its 200-day moving average is $41.59. The stock has a market cap of $5.74 billion, a P/E ratio of 25.66 and a beta of 1.41.
KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, November 3rd. The company reported $0.50 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.53 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $773.80 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $770.84 million. KAR Auction Services had a net margin of 7.58% and a return on equity of 19.45%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 16.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.47 EPS. On average, equities research analysts forecast that KAR Auction Services will post $2.08 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, January 6th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, December 21st will be paid a $0.32 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, December 19th. This is a positive change from KAR Auction Services’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.29. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.08%. KAR Auction Services’s payout ratio is presently 71.60%.
In related news, COO Donald S. Gottwald sold 18,125 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $38.51, for a total transaction of $697,993.75. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Benjamin Skuy sold 10,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $42.74, for a total value of $427,400.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 87,420 shares in the company, valued at $3,736,330.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.30% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in KAR. RWC Asset Management LLP bought a new stake in KAR Auction Services during the third quarter worth about $5,410,000. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD raised its stake in KAR Auction Services by 6.8% in the third quarter. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD now owns 7,703,262 shares of the company’s stock worth $332,473,000 after buying an additional 493,040 shares during the last quarter. Cornerstone Capital Management Holdings LLC. raised its stake in KAR Auction Services by 105.7% in the third quarter. Cornerstone Capital Management Holdings LLC. now owns 37,070 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,599,000 after buying an additional 19,049 shares during the last quarter. Credit Suisse AG raised its stake in KAR Auction Services by 192.8% in the third quarter. Credit Suisse AG now owns 830,229 shares of the company’s stock worth $35,832,000 after buying an additional 546,682 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Jane Street Group LLC bought a new stake in KAR Auction Services during the third quarter worth about $2,193,000.
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Aflac Inc. (AFL) Lifted to “Buy” at Vetr Inc.

Aflac Inc. (NYSE:AFL) was upgraded by stock analysts at Vetr from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Tuesday. The firm presently has a $74.76 price target on the stock. Vetr‘s price target suggests a potential upside of 4.38% from the company’s current price.
A number of other equities analysts also recently weighed in on the stock. Wells Fargo & Co. initiated coverage on shares of Aflac in a report on Friday, September 23rd. They issued a “market perform” rating on the stock. FBR & Co reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Aflac in a report on Friday, October 28th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Aflac from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $82.00 price target on the stock in a report on Tuesday, July 26th. Credit Suisse Group AG initiated coverage on Aflac in a research note on Friday, October 7th. They issued an “underperform” rating and a $75.00 price objective on the stock. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG restated a “hold” rating and issued a $73.00 price objective (down from $75.00) on shares of Aflac in a research note on Monday, August 1st. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have issued a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $70.21.

Aflac (NYSE:AFL) traded up 0.62% during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $71.62. The company had a trading volume of 1,579,666 shares. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $70.73 and its 200 day moving average is $71.29. The firm has a market capitalization of $29.23 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.35 and a beta of 1.07. Aflac has a 12-month low of $54.57 and a 12-month high of $74.50.
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Aflac (NYSE:AFL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 27th. The company reported $1.82 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.74 by $0.08. The company had revenue of $5.72 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.75 billion. Aflac had a net margin of 12.03% and a return on equity of 13.72%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 13.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.32 EPS. Equities research analysts expect that Aflac will post $6.95 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 1st. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, November 16th will be paid a $0.43 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, November 14th. This represents a $1.72 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.40%. This is a positive change from Aflac’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.41. Aflac’s dividend payout ratio is currently 27.30%.
In other Aflac news, insider Teresa L. White sold 35,734 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $74.28, for a total value of $2,654,321.52. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 29,633 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,201,139.24. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Audrey B. Tillman sold 1,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $73.98, for a total value of $110,970.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 33,958 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,512,212.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 3.90% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of AFL. Global X Management Co. LLC raised its stake in shares of Aflac by 2,617.5% in the second quarter. Global X Management Co. LLC now owns 1,549 shares of the company’s stock valued at $112,000 after buying an additional 1,492 shares in the last quarter. New York Life Trust Co. raised its stake in Aflac by 7.7% in the third quarter. New York Life Trust Co. now owns 1,550 shares of the company’s stock worth $111,000 after buying an additional 111 shares during the period. TLP Group LLC bought a new stake in Aflac during the third quarter worth $123,000. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC raised its stake in Aflac by 51.2% in the second quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 1,736 shares of the company’s stock worth $125,000 after buying an additional 588 shares during the period. Finally, Mosaic Family Wealth LLC raised its stake in Aflac by 41.7% in the third quarter. Mosaic Family Wealth LLC now owns 1,766 shares of the company’s stock worth $127,000 after buying an additional 520 shares during the period. 63.17% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
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Cohu Inc. (COHU) Rating Reiterated by B. Riley

Cohu Inc. (NASDAQ:COHU)‘s stock had its “buy” rating reaffirmed by equities research analysts at B. Riley in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. They currently have a $14.00 price objective on the stock. B. Riley’s price objective would indicate a potential upside of 8.95% from the company’s current price.
A number of other equities analysts also recently issued reports on COHU. TheStreet downgraded Cohu from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, July 29th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Cohu from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 3rd.
Cohu (NASDAQ:COHU) remained flat at $12.85 during midday trading on Tuesday. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $11.45 and its 200 day moving average is $11.30. Cohu has a 1-year low of $10.01 and a 1-year high of $13.32. The stock has a market capitalization of $343.24 million, a PE ratio of 116.82 and a beta of 0.84.
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Cohu (NASDAQ:COHU) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 27th. The company reported $0.14 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.06 by $0.08. The business had revenue of $69.30 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $67.95 million. Cohu had a return on equity of 3.04% and a net margin of 1.06%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 2.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.17 earnings per share. Equities research analysts predict that Cohu will post $0.50 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, January 2nd. Stockholders of record on Friday, November 18th will be issued a dividend of $0.06 per share. This represents a $0.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.87%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 16th. Cohu’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 218.20%.
In other news, Director William Bendush sold 6,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, November 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $12.14, for a total transaction of $72,840.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Insiders own 5.97% of the company’s stock.
Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in COHU. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. acquired a new stake in Cohu during the second quarter valued at approximately $8,162,000. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised its stake in Cohu by 22.6% in the first quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 1,770,825 shares of the company’s stock valued at $21,037,000 after buying an additional 326,300 shares during the last quarter. Cooke & Bieler LP raised its stake in Cohu by 41.1% in the fourth quarter. Cooke & Bieler LP now owns 990,273 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,953,000 after buying an additional 288,414 shares during the last quarter. TFS Capital LLC acquired a new stake in Cohu during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $2,222,000. Finally, BlackRock Fund Advisors raised its stake in Cohu by 9.1% in the third quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 1,853,375 shares of the company’s stock valued at $21,759,000 after buying an additional 154,915 shares during the last quarter. 82.24% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
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Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (ANF) Downgraded by Vetr Inc.

Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE:ANF) was downgraded by analysts at Vetr from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. They currently have a $14.40 price objective on the apparel retailer’s stock. Vetr‘s price target suggests a potential downside of 6.43% from the stock’s current price.
Several other equities analysts have also commented on the stock. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. in a research report on Monday. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $15.00 price target (down previously from $18.00) on shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. in a research report on Sunday. Mizuho set a $12.00 price target on shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday. RBC Capital Markets lowered shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. from a “sector perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and dropped their price target for the stock from $20.00 to $12.00 in a research report on Monday. Finally, FBR & Co reaffirmed an “underperform” rating on shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. in a research report on Monday. Nine research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $20.23.

Shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE:ANF) traded down 0.65% during midday trading on Tuesday, hitting $15.39. 3,329,646 shares of the stock were exchanged. The firm has a market cap of $1.04 billion, a P/E ratio of 81.86 and a beta of 1.31. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $15.49 and a 200 day moving average of $18.66. Abercrombie & Fitch Co. has a 12-month low of $14.00 and a 12-month high of $32.83.
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Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE:ANF) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, November 18th. The apparel retailer reported $0.02 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.19. Abercrombie & Fitch Co. had a return on equity of 1.50% and a net margin of 0.38%. The company had revenue of $821.70 million for the quarter. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.48 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was down 6.5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts forecast that Abercrombie & Fitch Co. will post $0.02 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, December 12th. Stockholders of record on Friday, December 2nd will be given a dividend of $0.20 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 30th. This represents a $0.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 5.20%. Abercrombie & Fitch Co.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 421.05%.
In other news, insider Bonadies Fran Horowitz bought 15,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 8th. The stock was bought at an average cost of $17.32 per share, for a total transaction of $259,800.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the insider now directly owns 44,701 shares in the company, valued at approximately $774,221.32. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, Director Craig R. Stapleton bought 10,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 1st. The stock was purchased at an average price of $17.65 per share, with a total value of $176,500.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now owns 57,398 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,013,074.70. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders own 0.85% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. AQR Capital Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. by 160.9% in the second quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 2,579,305 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock valued at $45,938,000 after buying an additional 1,590,722 shares during the last quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. boosted its position in shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. by 191.2% in the third quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 1,690,174 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock valued at $26,857,000 after buying an additional 1,109,787 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. by 11.6% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 7,408,956 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock valued at $131,954,000 after buying an additional 767,144 shares during the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its position in shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. by 40.8% in the third quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 2,059,047 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock valued at $32,718,000 after buying an additional 596,364 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Wellington Management Group LLP purchased a new position in shares of Abercrombie & Fitch Co. during the first quarter valued at approximately $14,609,000.
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Aldermore Group PLC (ALD) – Analysts’ Weekly Ratings Updates

Several brokerages have updated their recommendations and price targets on shares of Aldermore Group PLC (LON: ALD) in the last few weeks:

11/24/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its “buy” rating reaffirmed by analysts at Deutsche Bank AG. They now have a GBX 194 ($2.42) price target on the stock.
11/14/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its “outperform” rating reaffirmed by analysts at Macquarie. They now have a GBX 245 ($3.06) price target on the stock, up previously from GBX 240 ($3.00).
11/11/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its “neutral” rating reaffirmed by analysts at BNP Paribas. They now have a GBX 200 ($2.50) price target on the stock.
11/11/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its “buy” rating reaffirmed by analysts at Deutsche Bank AG.
11/11/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its price target raised by analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. from GBX 200 ($2.50) to GBX 220 ($2.75). They now have a “neutral” rating on the stock.
11/11/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its price target raised by analysts at Barclays PLC from GBX 200 ($2.50) to GBX 220 ($2.75). They now have an “overweight” rating on the stock.
11/10/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its price target raised by analysts at Peel Hunt from GBX 145 ($1.81) to GBX 175 ($2.19). They now have a “hold” rating on the stock.
11/10/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its “buy” rating reaffirmed by analysts at Numis Securities Ltd. They now have a GBX 211 ($2.64) price target on the stock.
10/25/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC was downgraded by analysts at Credit Suisse Group AG to a “neutral” rating. They now have a GBX 180 ($2.25) price target on the stock, down previously from GBX 185 ($2.31).
10/13/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC had its “buy” rating reaffirmed by analysts at Deutsche Bank AG. They now have a GBX 188 ($2.35) price target on the stock.
10/4/2016 – Aldermore Group PLC was upgraded by analysts at Barclays PLC to an “overweight” rating. They now have a GBX 200 ($2.50) price target on the stock, up previously from GBX 150 ($1.87).

Aldermore Group PLC (LON:ALD) opened at 209.00 on Friday. Aldermore Group PLC has a one year low of GBX 102.00 and a one year high of GBX 244.10. The company’s market capitalization is GBX 720.50 million. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is GBX 183.84 and its 200-day moving average price is GBX 169.82.

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