Traders bought shares of Lowe’s Cos. (NYSE:LOW) on weakness during trading on Wednesday following a weaker than expected earnings announcement. $259.61 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $231.58 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $28.03 million into the stock. Of all stocks tracked, Lowe’s Cos. had the 17th highest net in-flow for the day. Lowe’s Cos. traded down ($2.03) for the day and closed at $67.02The home improvement retailer reported $0.88 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.96 by $0.08. Lowe’s Cos. had a net margin of 4.58% and a return on equity of 43.38%. The firm earned $15.70 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $15.86 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.80 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 9.6% compared to the same quarter last year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, February 8th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, January 25th will be issued a $0.35 dividend. This represents a $1.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.09%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, January 23rd. Lowe’s Cos.’s dividend payout ratio is 45.16%.

Several research firms have recently issued reports on LOW. Credit Suisse Group AG set a $80.00 target price on Lowe’s Cos. and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, September 23rd. Robert W. Baird set a $88.00 target price on Lowe’s Cos. and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, September 19th. Morgan Stanley set a $87.00 target price on Lowe’s Cos. and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, August 19th. Vetr lowered Lowe’s Cos. from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $76.30 target price on the stock. in a report on Tuesday, October 18th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered Lowe’s Cos. from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and reduced their target price for the stock from $87.00 to $72.00 in a report on Wednesday, October 26th. Eleven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nineteen have given a buy rating to the stock. Lowe’s Cos. has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $83.18.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. CWM LLC raised its position in Lowe’s Cos. by 0.3% in the second quarter. CWM LLC now owns 1,264 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $100,000 after buying an additional 4 shares in the last quarter. Oakworth Capital Inc. raised its stake in shares of Lowe’s Cos. by 0.5% in the third quarter. Oakworth Capital Inc. now owns 3,311 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $239,000 after buying an additional 15 shares during the period. Parkside Financial Bank & Trust raised its stake in shares of Lowe’s Cos. by 0.6% in the second quarter. Parkside Financial Bank & Trust now owns 3,006 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $238,000 after buying an additional 19 shares during the period. Highland Private Wealth Management raised its stake in shares of Lowe’s Cos. by 1.1% in the second quarter. Highland Private Wealth Management now owns 2,734 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $217,000 after buying an additional 29 shares during the period. Finally, Aull & Monroe Investment Management Corp raised its stake in shares of Lowe’s Cos. by 0.3% in the second quarter. Aull & Monroe Investment Management Corp now owns 9,892 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $783,000 after buying an additional 30 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 75.07% of the company’s stock.

The company has a 50 day moving average price of $69.61 and a 200 day moving average price of $75.88. The firm has a market cap of $58.62 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.72 and a beta of 1.25.

About Lowe’s Cos.

Lowe’s Companies, Inc (Lowe’s) is a home improvement retailer. The Company operates approximately 1,860 home improvement and hardware stores, representing approximately 200 million square feet of retail selling space. The Company operates approximately 1,800 stores located across over 50 states in the United States, including approximately 80 Orchard Supply Hardware (Orchard) stores in California and Oregon, as well as approximately 40 stores in Canada and over 10 stores in Mexico.

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