Scripps Networks Interactive Inc. (NASDAQ:SNI) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report issued on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “We remain concerned about Scripps Networks' mounting programming costs and rising debt levels. Moreover, the company operates globally and hence, is exposed to foreign exchange-related risks. These headwinds have the potential to hurt the company's third-quarter results, which are scheduled to be released on Nov 7.We believe that these concerns are primarily responsible for the Zacks Consensus Estimate declining by $0.06 to $0.96 per share for the third quarter, over the last three months. We are, however, pleased by the strong growth in advertising revenues that crossed the $500 million mark in the second quarter. We are also positive on the company's growth by acquisition strategy.”

Several other research firms have also weighed in on SNI. Stifel Nicolaus upgraded Scripps Networks Interactive from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $75.00 price target on the stock in a report on Wednesday, July 20th. MKM Partners restated a “hold” rating on shares of Scripps Networks Interactive in a report on Monday, July 18th. Citigroup Inc. decreased their price target on Scripps Networks Interactive from $65.00 to $62.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, August 25th. Jefferies Group restated a “hold” rating and set a $67.00 price target on shares of Scripps Networks Interactive in a report on Tuesday, October 4th. Finally, Argus restated a “buy” rating and set a $100.00 price target on shares of Scripps Networks Interactive in a report on Tuesday, August 16th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have assigned a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $68.73.

Analyst Recommendations for Scripps Networks Interactive (NASDAQ:SNI)

Shares of Scripps Networks Interactive (NASDAQ:SNI) traded up 0.57% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $62.04. 105,209 shares of the stock were exchanged. Scripps Networks Interactive has a 12 month low of $50.81 and a 12 month high of $68.44. The firm has a market cap of $8.01 billion, a P/E ratio of 10.53 and a beta of 1.18. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $62.31 and its 200 day moving average is $63.78.

Scripps Networks Interactive (NASDAQ:SNI) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 9th. The company reported $1.58 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.50 by $0.08. Scripps Networks Interactive had a return on equity of 35.33% and a net margin of 22.91%. The company had revenue of $892.80 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $893.46 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.47 EPS. Scripps Networks Interactive’s quarterly revenue was up 22.0% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that Scripps Networks Interactive will post $5.15 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In related news, major shareholder Edward W. Scripps sold 45,190 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.17, for a total transaction of $2,809,462.30. Following the sale, the insider now owns 130,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $8,082,100. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, major shareholder Julia Scripps Heidt sold 152,863 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, September 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $60.44, for a total value of $9,239,039.72. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 208,766 shares in the company, valued at approximately $12,617,817.04. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 2.30% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Winslow Evans & Crocker Inc. increased its stake in shares of Scripps Networks Interactive by 2.9% in the second quarter. Winslow Evans & Crocker Inc. now owns 1,808 shares of the company’s stock worth $113,000 after buying an additional 51 shares during the last quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. increased its stake in shares of Scripps Networks Interactive by 8.8% in the second quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 1,929 shares of the company’s stock valued at $120,000 after buying an additional 156 shares in the last quarter. NEXT Financial Group Inc increased its stake in shares of Scripps Networks Interactive by 17.8% in the second quarter. NEXT Financial Group Inc now owns 1,988 shares of the company’s stock valued at $123,000 after buying an additional 300 shares in the last quarter. Mn Services Vermogensbeheer B.V. increased its stake in shares of Scripps Networks Interactive by 9.1% in the second quarter. Mn Services Vermogensbeheer B.V. now owns 2,037 shares of the company’s stock valued at $114,000 after buying an additional 170 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Barnett & Company Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Scripps Networks Interactive during the first quarter valued at $177,000. 66.36% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About Scripps Networks Interactive

Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc is a developer of lifestyle-oriented content for linear and interactive video platforms, including television and the Internet brands. The Company’s segments include U.S. Networks, International Networks, and Corporate and Other. Its U.S. Networks segment includes its approximately six national television networks: HGTV, Food Network, Travel Channel, DIY Network, Cooking Channel and Great American Country.

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:SNI

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