Windstream (WIN) Downgraded to “Sell” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report report published on Saturday morning.

According to Zacks, “Over the past three months, share prcie of Windstream declined 12.1% compared to the industry's 0.3% gain. Moreover, Windstream remains under pressure with losses in the wholesale business, technological changes and its related expenses, highly leveraged balance sheet, diminishing access lines and stringent regulatory measures. On the flip side, we appreciate Windstream’s focus on improving sales, cost-cutting initiatives, planned pricing initiatives which should rake in profits and check churn. Windstream is enhancing its Cloud Connect solution. Launch of a new multi-featured SD-WAN solution looks good. Expansion of Kinetic TV services in North Carolina, merger with EarthLink Holdings should rake in profits. Expansion of its metro fibre network business in the newer areas and aim to extend the deployment of G.fast technologies over traditional copper telephone wires bode well.”

Several other analysts have also issued reports on WIN. ValuEngine lowered shares of Windstream from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. BidaskClub lowered shares of Windstream from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 27th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered shares of Windstream from a neutral rating to an underweight rating in a research report on Tuesday, January 2nd. Barclays began coverage on shares of Windstream in a research report on Friday, December 15th. They issued an underweight rating and a $1.50 price target on the stock. Finally, Canaccord Genuity reissued a buy rating and issued a $3.00 price target on shares of Windstream in a research report on Friday, November 24th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, one has given a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of Sell and a consensus price target of $2.25.

Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN) traded up $0.05 on Friday, reaching $1.82. 165,550 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 2,900,000. The company has a current ratio of 0.77, a quick ratio of 0.70 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 20.24. The stock has a market capitalization of $323.74, a PE ratio of -0.69 and a beta of -0.12. Windstream has a 52-week low of $1.71 and a 52-week high of $8.35.

Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 9th. The technology company reported ($0.55) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of ($0.46) by ($0.09). Windstream had a negative net margin of 6.49% and a negative return on equity of 64.22%. sell-side analysts expect that Windstream will post -2.19 EPS for the current year.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC increased its holdings in Windstream by 287.1% during the 3rd quarter. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC now owns 115,280 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $204,000 after acquiring an additional 85,500 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can increased its holdings in Windstream by 2,071.1% during the 4th quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 106,928 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $197,000 after acquiring an additional 102,003 shares during the period. Magnetar Financial LLC increased its holdings in Windstream by 192.6% during the 3rd quarter. Magnetar Financial LLC now owns 177,379 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $314,000 after acquiring an additional 116,767 shares during the period. Royce & Associates LP increased its holdings in Windstream by 22.6% during the 3rd quarter. Royce & Associates LP now owns 2,346,752 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $4,154,000 after acquiring an additional 433,134 shares during the period. Finally, California Public Employees Retirement System increased its holdings in Windstream by 43.5% during the 3rd quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 1,682,724 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $2,978,000 after acquiring an additional 509,970 shares during the period. 66.27% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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About Windstream

Windstream Corporation (Windstream) is a provider of advanced communications and technology solutions, including managed services and cloud computing, to businesses nationwide. In addition to business services, the Company offers broadband, voice and video services to consumers in primarily rural markets.

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