The Priceline Group Inc. (PCLN) Lowered to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research
According to Zacks, “Priceline.com is one of the leading online travel companies in the world. The company reported strong second quarter results. Both agency and merchant businesses showed strong momentum. The secular growth trend in the online travel booking market, Priceline’s strong position in international markets, growth opportunities in the domestic market, good execution, prudent marketing strategy and strong financial position are positives. At the same time, weaker ADRs, macro headwinds, increasing advertising spend and occupancy tax-related litigation remain overhangs.”
PCLN has been the topic of a number of other research reports. Cantor Fitzgerald reiterated a buy rating on shares of The Priceline Group in a research report on Sunday, August 28th. Vetr cut The Priceline Group from a hold rating to a sell rating and set a $1,316.39 target price on the stock. in a research report on Tuesday, June 7th. Jefferies Group reiterated a buy rating and set a $1,660.00 target price on shares of The Priceline Group in a research report on Monday, July 25th. Deutsche Bank AG lifted their target price on The Priceline Group from $1,330.00 to $1,450.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Friday, August 5th. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada reiterated an outperform rating and set a $1,600.00 target price on shares of The Priceline Group in a research report on Friday, August 5th. Six investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty-one have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $1,525.14.
The Priceline Group (NASDAQ:PCLN) traded down 0.11% during trading on Wednesday, reaching $1496.00. The company had a trading volume of 184,710 shares. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $1,442.68 and a 200-day moving average of $1,346.91. The stock has a market capitalization of $73.94 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.45 and a beta of 1.62. The Priceline Group has a 1-year low of $954.02 and a 1-year high of $1,501.79.
The Priceline Group (NASDAQ:PCLN) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 4th. The company reported $13.93 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $12.69 by $1.24. The Priceline Group had a return on equity of 32.93% and a net margin of 27.08%. The company had revenue of $2.55 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.58 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $12.45 earnings per share. The Priceline Group’s quarterly revenue was up 12.1% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts anticipate that The Priceline Group will post $68.57 EPS for the current fiscal year.
In related news, CEO Jeffery H. Boyd sold 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $1,353.90, for a total transaction of $4,061,700.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 94,488 shares in the company, valued at $127,927,303.20. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Gillian Tans sold 131 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $1,327.89, for a total transaction of $173,953.59. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 6,049 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,032,406.61. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.42% of the company’s stock.
Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. raised its stake in The Priceline Group by 2.1% in the first quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 1,298,207 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,673,337,000 after buying an additional 26,300 shares during the period. Stearns Financial Services Group raised its stake in The Priceline Group by 10.9% in the first quarter. Stearns Financial Services Group now owns 214 shares of the company’s stock valued at $276,000 after buying an additional 21 shares during the period. Bristlecone Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in The Priceline Group during the first quarter valued at $1,554,000. Howard Hughes Medical Institute acquired a new stake in The Priceline Group during the first quarter valued at $5,799,000. Finally, Sentry Investment Management LLC raised its stake in The Priceline Group by 0.6% in the first quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC now owns 3,881 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,002,000 after buying an additional 25 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 93.99% of the company’s stock.
About The Priceline Group
The Priceline Group Inc is a provider of travel and restaurant reservation and related services. The Company, through its online travel companies (OTCs), connects consumers wishing to make travel reservations with providers of travel services across the world. It offers consumers an array of accommodation reservations (including hotels, bed and breakfasts, hostels, apartments, vacation rentals and other properties) through its Booking.com, priceline.com and agoda.com brands.
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