Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Juniper Networks, Inc. (NYSE:JNPR) from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note released on Wednesday morning. They currently have $32.00 target price on the network equipment provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Juniper is gaining on strong adoption of its cloud products and robust performance from the QFX switch product line, which was evident from the second-quarter results. Both earnings and revenues increased on a year-over-year basis in the reported quarter. We note that the stock has outperformed the industry on a year-to-date basis. We believe that frequent product launches, cost reduction initiatives and improving execution are encouraging. However, management noted that pricing pressure, unfavorable product and customer mix along with higher DRAM memory prices will continue to hurt gross margin in the rest of 2017. Moreover lumpy router revenue growth is also a concern. Additionally, stiff competition and ongoing consolidation in the telecom market remain concerns.”

Other research analysts have also issued research reports about the company. Pacific Crest began coverage on Juniper Networks in a research report on Monday, June 5th. They set a sector weight rating and a $31.00 price objective for the company. BidaskClub lowered Juniper Networks from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 1st. Robert W. Baird restated a neutral rating and set a $30.00 price objective (up previously from $27.00) on shares of Juniper Networks in a research report on Saturday, April 29th. Drexel Hamilton restated a buy rating and set a $37.00 price objective on shares of Juniper Networks in a research report on Thursday, July 20th. Finally, UBS AG restated a neutral rating and set a $30.00 price objective (up previously from $28.00) on shares of Juniper Networks in a research report on Wednesday, July 26th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a hold rating, twelve have assigned a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the stock. Juniper Networks currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $30.94.

Shares of Juniper Networks (NYSE JNPR) opened at 27.16 on Wednesday. The company has a market cap of $10.33 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.25 and a beta of 1.07. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $28.37 and its 200 day moving average price is $28.55. Juniper Networks has a 52 week low of $22.40 and a 52 week high of $30.96.

Juniper Networks (NYSE:JNPR) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 25th. The network equipment provider reported $0.57 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.54 by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $1.31 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.29 billion. Juniper Networks had a return on equity of 14.13% and a net margin of 12.66%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 7.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.50 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Juniper Networks will post $2.24 EPS for the current year.

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The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 22nd. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 1st will be paid a dividend of $0.10 per share. This represents a $0.40 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.47%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 30th. Juniper Networks’s dividend payout ratio is presently 23.39%.

In related news, VP Terrance F. Spidell sold 10,600 shares of Juniper Networks stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $29.47, for a total transaction of $312,382.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 10,600 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $312,382. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, EVP Vincent Molinaro sold 5,031 shares of Juniper Networks stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, July 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $30.00, for a total transaction of $150,930.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 18,944 shares of company stock worth $555,049. 3.40% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of JNPR. Toronto Dominion Bank raised its position in shares of Juniper Networks by 26.1% in the second quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 129,438 shares of the network equipment provider’s stock valued at $3,608,000 after buying an additional 26,792 shares during the last quarter. Oak Associates Ltd. OH raised its position in shares of Juniper Networks by 10.7% in the second quarter. Oak Associates Ltd. OH now owns 425,657 shares of the network equipment provider’s stock valued at $11,867,000 after buying an additional 41,000 shares during the last quarter. Koch Industries Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Juniper Networks during the second quarter valued at about $850,000. Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC raised its position in shares of Juniper Networks by 3.6% in the second quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC now owns 41,745 shares of the network equipment provider’s stock valued at $1,164,000 after buying an additional 1,440 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Cypress Capital Group acquired a new position in shares of Juniper Networks during the second quarter valued at about $273,000. 92.77% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Juniper Networks Company Profile

Juniper Networks, Inc designs, develops and sells products and services for high-performance networks to enable customers to build networks for their businesses. The Company sells its products in over 100 countries in three geographic regions: Americas; Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific.

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Analyst Recommendations for Juniper Networks (NYSE:JNPR)

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