Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. (NASDAQ:FOXA) from a strong sell rating to a hold rating in a research report released on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Twenty-First Century Fox’s Cable Network Programming has been driving the company’s performance owing to rising affiliate fees. The company said that the pace of affiliate fees will accelerate in the back half of the fiscal year as 15%–20% of the company’s domestic subscribers will be up for annual renewal in the couple of years. However, increase in programming costs and fluctuation in foreign currency exchange rate continues to act as a headwind for Twenty-First Century Fox. In the fourth-quarter of fiscal 2016, the company expenses rose 15% primarily due to hiked sports programming costs owing to soccer rights costs at FNG International as well as Major League Baseball and streaming rights costs at the RSNs. The company expects costs at Cable Network to go up in fiscal 2017. Increase in expenses may dent the company’s margins and in turn the bottom line in the coming quarters.”

Other research analysts have also recently issued research reports about the company. Jefferies Group cut their price objective on Twenty-First Century Fox from $33.00 to $32.00 and set a buy rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, August 4th. Pivotal Research cut their price objective on Twenty-First Century Fox from $36.00 to $34.00 and set a buy rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, August 4th. RBC Capital Markets reiterated a buy rating and issued a $32.00 price objective (down previously from $36.00) on shares of Twenty-First Century Fox in a research report on Thursday, August 4th. Moffett Nathanson reissued a buy rating and issued a $32.00 target price on shares of Twenty-First Century Fox in a report on Tuesday, July 12th. Finally, Nomura reissued a buy rating on shares of Twenty-First Century Fox in a report on Saturday, July 9th. Eleven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seventeen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $31.61.

Shares of Twenty-First Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA) traded up 0.57% during mid-day trading on Monday, reaching $24.82. 3,337,934 shares of the company traded hands. Twenty-First Century Fox has a 52-week low of $22.66 and a 52-week high of $31.40. The company’s 50 day moving average is $24.30 and its 200 day moving average is $27.14. The stock has a market capitalization of $46.23 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.53 and a beta of 1.34.

Twenty-First Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.45 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.37 by $0.08. The firm earned $6.65 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.68 billion. Twenty-First Century Fox had a return on equity of 21.63% and a net margin of 10.08%. Twenty-First Century Fox’s revenue was up 7.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.39 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts forecast that Twenty-First Century Fox will post $1.92 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 19th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, September 14th will be paid a $0.18 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, September 12th. This is an increase from Twenty-First Century Fox’s previous dividend of $0.15. Twenty-First Century Fox’s payout ratio is 25.35%.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Iowa State Bank acquired a new position in Twenty-First Century Fox during the second quarter valued at $126,000. Capital Analysts LLC boosted its position in Twenty-First Century Fox by 38.6% in the second quarter. Capital Analysts LLC now owns 4,699 shares of the company’s stock valued at $192,000 after buying an additional 1,309 shares in the last quarter. Johnson Financial Group Inc. boosted its position in Twenty-First Century Fox by 5,109.9% in the second quarter. Johnson Financial Group Inc. now owns 4,741 shares of the company’s stock valued at $128,000 after buying an additional 4,650 shares in the last quarter. SevenBridge Financial Group LLC acquired a new position in Twenty-First Century Fox during the second quarter valued at $166,000. Finally, Quadrant Capital Group LLC boosted its position in Twenty-First Century Fox by 2.4% in the second quarter. Quadrant Capital Group LLC now owns 6,713 shares of the company’s stock valued at $171,000 after buying an additional 159 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 53.33% of the company’s stock.

Twenty-First Century Fox Company Profile

Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc is a media and entertainment company. The Company operates through segments: Cable Network Programming, Television, Filmed Entertainment, and Other, Corporate and Eliminations. The Company produces and licenses news, business news, sports, general entertainment, factual entertainment and movie programming for distribution primarily through cable television systems, direct broadcast satellite operators, telecommunications companies and online video distributors in the United States and internationally.

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