Ulta Beauty Inc. (NASDAQ:ULTA) was the recipient of some unusual options trading on Thursday. Investors acquired 35,949 call options on the stock. This represents an increase of 967% compared to the average volume of 3,369 call options.

Several research analysts have recently commented on ULTA shares. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $333.00 price objective on Ulta Beauty and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Saturday, May 27th. Zacks Investment Research raised Ulta Beauty from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $329.00 price objective for the company in a report on Monday, May 22nd. BMO Capital Markets set a $345.00 price objective on Ulta Beauty and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Saturday, May 27th. Jefferies Group LLC raised Ulta Beauty from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price objective for the stock from $266.00 to $350.00 in a report on Friday, June 2nd. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) raised Ulta Beauty from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $310.00 price objective for the company in a report on Friday, July 14th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have issued a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Ulta Beauty has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $294.72.

In other news, Director Catherine Ann Halligan sold 500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, June 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $312.36, for a total transaction of $156,180.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 4,126 shares in the company, valued at $1,288,797.36. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, Director Robert F. Diromualdo sold 20,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $309.05, for a total value of $6,181,000.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 4,717 shares in the company, valued at $1,457,788.85. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 5.20% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in ULTA. Iberiabank Corp raised its position in Ulta Beauty by 9.2% in the second quarter. Iberiabank Corp now owns 4,549 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $1,307,000 after buying an additional 383 shares in the last quarter. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC raised its position in Ulta Beauty by 8.4% in the first quarter. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC now owns 13,706 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $3,909,000 after buying an additional 1,065 shares in the last quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. raised its position in Ulta Beauty by 0.4% in the first quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 94,590 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $26,981,000 after buying an additional 405 shares in the last quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD raised its position in Ulta Beauty by 107.0% in the first quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD now owns 9,120 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $2,601,000 after buying an additional 4,715 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Covenant Asset Management LLC raised its position in Ulta Beauty by 1.9% in the second quarter. Covenant Asset Management LLC now owns 3,676 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $1,056,000 after buying an additional 70 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 85.68% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA) opened at 212.36 on Friday. Ulta Beauty has a 1-year low of $208.25 and a 1-year high of $314.86. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $249.47 and its 200-day moving average price is $277.02. The stock has a market cap of $13.15 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.27 and a beta of 0.57.

Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 24th. The specialty retailer reported $1.83 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.78 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $1.29 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.29 billion. Ulta Beauty had a return on equity of 29.72% and a net margin of 8.84%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 20.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.43 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Ulta Beauty will post $8.32 earnings per share for the current year.

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About Ulta Beauty

Ulta Beauty, Inc is a holding company for the Ulta Beauty group of companies. The Company is a beauty retailer. The Company offers cosmetics, fragrance, skin, hair care products and salon services. The Company offers approximately 20,000 products from over 500 beauty brands across all categories, including the Company’s own private label.

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