Papa John’s Int’l, Inc. (NASDAQ:PZZA) shares saw an uptick in trading volume on Thursday . 2,373,052 shares changed hands during trading, an increase of 83% from the previous session’s volume of 1,294,647 shares.The stock last traded at $59.04 and had previously closed at $56.23.

A number of brokerages have recently commented on PZZA. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Papa John’s Int’l from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Saturday, September 29th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Papa John’s Int’l from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, September 28th. Stephens restated a “buy” rating and issued a $60.00 target price on shares of Papa John’s Int’l in a report on Tuesday, August 7th. Stifel Nicolaus upgraded shares of Papa John’s Int’l from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and boosted their target price for the company from $35.00 to $38.00 in a report on Wednesday, August 15th. Finally, Longbow Research upgraded shares of Papa John’s Int’l from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, August 13th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $59.50.

The firm has a market cap of $1.76 billion, a PE ratio of 22.53, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.98 and a beta of 0.27.

Papa John’s Int’l (NASDAQ:PZZA) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, November 6th. The company reported $0.20 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.23 by ($0.03). The firm had revenue of $364.01 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $390.62 million. Papa John’s Int’l had a net margin of 2.64% and a negative return on equity of 27.98%. Papa John’s Int’l’s quarterly revenue was down 15.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.60 EPS. As a group, sell-side analysts expect that Papa John’s Int’l, Inc. will post 1.5 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, November 23rd. Shareholders of record on Monday, November 12th will be paid a $0.225 dividend. This represents a $0.90 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.52%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, November 8th. Papa John’s Int’l’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 34.35%.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC increased its stake in Papa John’s Int’l by 16.2% in the third quarter. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC now owns 29,071 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,491,000 after purchasing an additional 4,044 shares in the last quarter. Point72 Asset Management L.P. increased its stake in Papa John’s Int’l by 34.5% in the third quarter. Point72 Asset Management L.P. now owns 395,419 shares of the company’s stock valued at $20,277,000 after purchasing an additional 101,376 shares in the last quarter. Vident Investment Advisory LLC increased its stake in Papa John’s Int’l by 37.3% in the third quarter. Vident Investment Advisory LLC now owns 7,054 shares of the company’s stock valued at $362,000 after purchasing an additional 1,918 shares in the last quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. increased its stake in Papa John’s Int’l by 12.3% in the third quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 8,231 shares of the company’s stock valued at $422,000 after purchasing an additional 903 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Litespeed Management L.L.C. bought a new stake in Papa John’s Int’l in the third quarter valued at $10,317,000. 81.69% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Papa John’s Int’l (NASDAQ:PZZA)

Papa John's International, Inc operates and franchises pizza delivery and carryout restaurants under the Papa John's trademark in the United States and internationally. It operates through five segments: Domestic Company-Owned Restaurants, North America Commissaries, North America Franchising, International Operations, and All Others.

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