TAL Education Group (TAL) Trading Down 14.3% Following Weak Earnings

TAL Education Group (NYSE:TAL)’s share price dropped 14.3% during mid-day trading on Thursday following a weaker than expected earnings announcement. The stock traded as low as $26.42 and last traded at $27.73. Approximately 38,839,007 shares were traded during mid-day trading, an increase of 1,213% from the average daily volume of 2,959,120 shares. The stock had previously closed at $32.37.

The company reported $0.10 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.12 by ($0.02). TAL Education Group had a net margin of 9.90% and a return on equity of 19.75%. The company had revenue of $455.80 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $441.18 million. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 68.1% compared to the same quarter last year.

TAL has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered TAL Education Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 29th. Bank of America Corporation reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $40.30 target price (up previously from $29.10) on shares of TAL Education Group in a research note on Monday, September 25th. Jefferies Group LLC increased their target price on TAL Education Group to $35.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, August 28th. Morgan Stanley initiated coverage on TAL Education Group in a research note on Friday, August 25th. They issued an “overweight” rating and a $37.00 target price for the company. Finally, J P Morgan Chase & Co increased their target price on TAL Education Group to $31.67 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, seven have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $31.16.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. purchased a new position in TAL Education Group in the second quarter valued at about $153,000. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC purchased a new position in TAL Education Group in the second quarter valued at about $154,000. QS Investors LLC purchased a new position in TAL Education Group in the second quarter valued at about $208,000. Brighton Jones LLC purchased a new position in TAL Education Group in the second quarter valued at about $226,000. Finally, Greenleaf Trust purchased a new position in TAL Education Group in the second quarter valued at about $229,000. 9.55% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

The company’s 50-day moving average price is $33.34 and its 200 day moving average price is $25.59. The firm has a market capitalization of $13.84 billion, a PE ratio of 115.27 and a beta of 0.26.

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About TAL Education Group

TAL Education Group is a holding company for a group of companies engaged in provision of after-school tutoring programs for primary and secondary school students in the People’s Republic of China (the PRC). The Company is a K-12 after-school tutoring services provider in China. The Company’s Xueersi Peiyou small classes course consists of approximately four semesters, which include approximately two school semesters in Spring and Fall, and approximately two holiday semesters in summer and winter.

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