Zacks Investment Research Lowers ViaSat, Inc. (VSAT) to Hold
Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of ViaSat, Inc. (NASDAQ:VSAT) from a strong-buy rating to a hold rating in a research report report published on Tuesday.
According to Zacks, “ViaSat’s second-quarter fiscal 2018 adjusted earnings beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a whopping 250% but fell year over year, hurt by escalating research and development costs, and costs related to the ViaSat-2 service launch activities. High R&D and ramp-up costs remain a major headwind to the company’s margins in the near term. The company recorded terrific growth in government business, which was somewhat offset by contraction in Commercial Networks revenues. Steady growth in in-flight connectivity services, mobile broadband, consumer ARPU gains and cost-reduction initiatives proved conducive to growth. ViaSat shares have outperformed the industry’s average return as well, over the past six months. However, persistent weakness in the Commercial Networks segment, seasonality of demand, strong competition and huge rise in R&D expenses continue to be overhangs for the company’s profitability.”
VSAT has been the subject of several other reports. B. Riley restated a buy rating and issued a $89.00 price objective on shares of ViaSat in a report on Monday, August 7th. Royal Bank Of Canada reduced their target price on shares of ViaSat from $50.00 to $48.00 and set an underperform rating for the company in a report on Thursday, October 5th. Needham & Company LLC upgraded ViaSat from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $78.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Friday, November 10th. TheStreet lowered ViaSat from a b- rating to a c rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 9th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC set a $67.00 price target on ViaSat and gave the stock a hold rating in a research note on Sunday, September 10th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $74.17.
ViaSat (NASDAQ:VSAT) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, November 8th. The communications equipment provider reported $0.09 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.02 by $0.07. The company had revenue of $393.10 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $401.83 million. ViaSat had a negative net margin of 0.75% and a positive return on equity of 0.13%. ViaSat’s quarterly revenue was down 1.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.40 earnings per share. sell-side analysts expect that ViaSat will post -0.98 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
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In other ViaSat news, CEO Mark D. Dankberg sold 28,500 shares of ViaSat stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, September 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $60.12, for a total transaction of $1,713,420.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 28,500 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,713,420. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, Director Jeffrey M. Nash sold 2,000 shares of ViaSat stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $72.26, for a total value of $144,520.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 123,300 shares of company stock worth $7,802,144 in the last ninety days. 7.70% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Disciplined Growth Investors Inc. MN boosted its stake in shares of ViaSat by 109.3% in the second quarter. Disciplined Growth Investors Inc. MN now owns 1,148,694 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock valued at $76,044,000 after buying an additional 599,752 shares in the last quarter. Hood River Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in ViaSat during the second quarter worth $29,147,000. Fiduciary Management Inc. WI purchased a new stake in ViaSat during the second quarter worth $28,948,000. Odey Asset Management Group Ltd raised its holdings in shares of ViaSat by 23.2% in the second quarter. Odey Asset Management Group Ltd now owns 2,148,954 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $142,261,000 after acquiring an additional 404,251 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC acquired a new position in shares of ViaSat in the second quarter worth $18,403,000. Institutional investors own 99.26% of the company’s stock.
ViaSat Company Profile
ViaSat, Inc is engaged in broadband technologies and services. The Company operates through three segments: satellite services, commercial networks and government systems. The satellite services segment provides satellite-based broadband services to consumers, enterprises, commercial airlines and mobile broadband customers primarily in the United States.
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