Loring Wolcott & Coolidge Fiduciary Advisors LLP MA boosted its position in shares of Acuity Brands Inc (NYSE:AYI) by 8.9% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 55,072 shares of the electronics maker’s stock after buying an additional 4,524 shares during the period. Loring Wolcott & Coolidge Fiduciary Advisors LLP MA owned approximately 0.13% of Acuity Brands worth $11,160,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Seven Bridges Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Acuity Brands during the second quarter worth $117,000. Van ECK Associates Corp increased its stake in Acuity Brands by 7.7% in the first quarter. Van ECK Associates Corp now owns 614 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $125,000 after buying an additional 44 shares in the last quarter. Capital Analysts LLC increased its stake in Acuity Brands by 3.8% in the first quarter. Capital Analysts LLC now owns 680 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $139,000 after buying an additional 25 shares in the last quarter. Global X Management Co. LLC increased its stake in Acuity Brands by 204.1% in the first quarter. Global X Management Co. LLC now owns 745 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $152,000 after buying an additional 500 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Penserra Capital Management LLC increased its stake in Acuity Brands by 21.1% in the second quarter. Penserra Capital Management LLC now owns 780 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $158,000 after buying an additional 136 shares in the last quarter. 95.15% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Acuity Brands Inc (NYSE AYI) opened at 176.75 on Friday. The company has a market capitalization of $7.62 billion, a PE ratio of 24.65 and a beta of 1.41. Acuity Brands Inc has a one year low of $157.33 and a one year high of $278.21. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $194.54 and a 200-day moving average price of $190.79.

Acuity Brands (NYSE:AYI) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, June 29th. The electronics maker reported $2.15 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.03 by $0.12. The business had revenue of $891.60 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $878.66 million. Acuity Brands had a return on equity of 19.89% and a net margin of 9.04%. Acuity Brands’s revenue was up 4.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $2.06 EPS. Analysts expect that Acuity Brands Inc will post $8.31 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Acuity Brands declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback plan on Thursday, June 29th that authorizes the company to repurchase 2,000,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the electronics maker to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, August 1st. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, July 18th were given a dividend of $0.13 per share. This represents a $0.52 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.29%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, July 14th. Acuity Brands’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 7.24%.

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A number of analysts have weighed in on the stock. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Acuity Brands from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Friday, August 11th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Acuity Brands from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $201.00 target price for the company in a research report on Thursday, June 15th. Canaccord Genuity reissued a “buy” rating and set a $215.00 target price on shares of Acuity Brands in a research report on Friday, June 30th. Roth Capital set a $150.00 target price on shares of Acuity Brands and gave the company a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, June 27th. Finally, Robert W. Baird reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $206.00 price objective (down previously from $210.00) on shares of Acuity Brands in a research report on Monday, June 19th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the stock. Acuity Brands currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $219.00.

In other Acuity Brands news, Director Peter C. Browning sold 970 shares of Acuity Brands stock in a transaction on Thursday, July 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $200.05, for a total transaction of $194,048.50. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 1,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $200,050. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, EVP Mark A. Black sold 5,427 shares of Acuity Brands stock in a transaction on Friday, July 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $205.29, for a total value of $1,114,108.83. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.40% of the company’s stock.

About Acuity Brands

Acuity Brands, Inc is a provider of lighting solutions for commercial, institutional, industrial, infrastructure and residential applications throughout North America and other international markets. The Company operates through North American segment. The Company offers a portfolio of indoor and outdoor lighting and building management solutions for commercial, institutional, industrial, infrastructure and residential applications.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Acuity Brands (NYSE:AYI)

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