LinkedIn Corp. (NYSE:LNKD) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “LinkedIn, along with its subsidiaries, offers an online platform for professionals to enhance their network in the virtual world. Of late, estimates for this professional networking behemoth have remained stable. We believe that LinkedIn’s initiatives to bolster advertising revenues through product launches and partnership programs have been commendable. We also expect advertisers to take note of the company’s growing user base. Additionally, by selling itself to Microsoft, LinkedIn has unlocked value for its shareholders and is likely to grow faster than its competitors with the help of Microsoft’s cloud capabilities. On the flip side, continued investments to provide new and improved products and services might hurt LinkedIn’s profits in the short term. However, over the long term, these investments will drive member growth and user engagement.”

Other research analysts have also recently issued research reports about the company. Vetr raised LinkedIn Corp. from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $121.03 target price for the company in a research note on Tuesday, June 7th. Royal Bank Of Canada raised LinkedIn Corp. from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $160.00 target price for the company in a research note on Wednesday, June 8th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Mizuho reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and set a $196.00 target price (up previously from $145.00) on shares of LinkedIn Corp. in a research note on Monday, June 13th. Avondale Partners cut LinkedIn Corp. from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and raised their target price for the company from $140.00 to $196.00 in a research note on Monday, June 13th. Finally, Canaccord Genuity cut LinkedIn Corp. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $196.00 target price for the company. in a research note on Monday, June 13th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirty-four have given a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $199.29.

LinkedIn Corp. (NYSE:LNKD) traded up 0.04% on Wednesday, hitting $192.30. 263,652 shares of the stock were exchanged. The company’s 50-day moving average is $192.25 and its 200-day moving average is $162.46. LinkedIn Corp. has a 52 week low of $98.25 and a 52 week high of $258.39. The company’s market cap is $25.91 billion.

LinkedIn Corp. (NYSE:LNKD) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 4th. The social networking company reported $1.13 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.78 by $0.35. LinkedIn Corp. had a positive return on equity of 0.47% and a negative net margin of 6.23%. The company earned $933 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $898.30 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.55 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 31.0% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts predict that LinkedIn Corp. will post $3.84 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, VP Susan J.S. Taylor sold 426 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $190.45, for a total transaction of $81,131.70. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 11,428 shares in the company, valued at $2,176,462.60. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Michael John Callahan sold 564 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, September 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $192.65, for a total value of $108,654.60. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 55,108 shares in the company, valued at approximately $10,616,556.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 12.72% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Barnett & Company Inc. raised its stake in LinkedIn Corp. by 65.2% in the second quarter. Barnett & Company Inc. now owns 570 shares of the social networking company’s stock valued at $108,000 after buying an additional 225 shares during the last quarter. FineMark National Bank & Trust bought a new stake in LinkedIn Corp. during the second quarter valued at about $118,000. Toronto Dominion Bank raised its stake in LinkedIn Corp. by 0.9% in the second quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 640 shares of the social networking company’s stock valued at $121,000 after buying an additional 6 shares during the last quarter. Capital Analysts LLC raised its stake in LinkedIn Corp. by 9.7% in the second quarter. Capital Analysts LLC now owns 655 shares of the social networking company’s stock valued at $124,000 after buying an additional 58 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Checchi Capital Advisers LLC raised its stake in LinkedIn Corp. by 5.8% in the second quarter. Checchi Capital Advisers LLC now owns 713 shares of the social networking company’s stock valued at $135,000 after buying an additional 39 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 65.51% of the company’s stock.

LinkedIn Corp. Company Profile

LinkedIn Corporation (LinkedIn) is a professional network on the Internet with approximately 400 million members in over 200 countries and territories. The Company provides the majority of its products at no cost to its members. It offers approximately three product lines: Talent Solutions, which includes Hiring, and Learning and Development; Marketing Solutions and Premium Subscriptions.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:LNKD

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