Viacom (VIAB) Lifted to Buy at Needham & Company LLC

Needham & Company LLC upgraded shares of Viacom (NASDAQ:VIAB) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report released on Thursday, March 15th, Marketbeat reports. Needham & Company LLC currently has $40.00 price target on the stock. The analysts noted that the move was a valuation call.

VIAB has been the subject of several other reports. Wells Fargo reissued a market perform rating and issued a $32.00 price objective (up from $25.00) on shares of Viacom in a research report on Thursday, January 4th. Zacks Investment Research lowered Viacom from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Saturday, January 20th. Barrington Research lowered Viacom from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a research report on Tuesday, January 2nd. UBS decreased their target price on Viacom from $41.00 to $38.00 and set a buy rating for the company in a research report on Friday, November 17th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada upgraded Viacom from an underperform rating to a sector perform rating and set a $35.00 price target for the company in a research note on Friday, February 9th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seventeen have issued a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $35.36.

Shares of NASDAQ VIAB traded up $0.13 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $30.90. 2,803,305 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 3,039,415. The company has a market cap of $12,432.34, a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.20, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.17 and a beta of 1.46. The company has a quick ratio of 1.14, a current ratio of 1.41 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.52. Viacom has a twelve month low of $22.13 and a twelve month high of $45.59.

Viacom (NASDAQ:VIAB) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, February 8th. The company reported $1.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.94 by $0.09. Viacom had a return on equity of 26.28% and a net margin of 15.49%. The business had revenue of $3.07 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.14 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.04 EPS. Viacom’s revenue for the quarter was down 7.6% compared to the same quarter last year. research analysts anticipate that Viacom will post 4.03 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, April 3rd. Shareholders of record on Thursday, March 15th were issued a dividend of $0.20 per share. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, March 14th. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.59%. Viacom’s payout ratio is 21.22%.

Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Financial Engines Advisors L.L.C. increased its holdings in shares of Viacom by 8.7% in the fourth quarter. Financial Engines Advisors L.L.C. now owns 20,702 shares of the company’s stock worth $638,000 after purchasing an additional 1,657 shares during the period. Standard Life Aberdeen plc increased its holdings in shares of Viacom by 1.5% in the fourth quarter. Standard Life Aberdeen plc now owns 117,055 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,607,000 after purchasing an additional 1,749 shares during the period. Arizona State Retirement System increased its holdings in shares of Viacom by 2.2% in the fourth quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 89,394 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,754,000 after purchasing an additional 1,911 shares during the period. Norinchukin Bank The increased its holdings in shares of Viacom by 7.4% in the fourth quarter. Norinchukin Bank The now owns 28,209 shares of the company’s stock worth $869,000 after purchasing an additional 1,955 shares during the period. Finally, Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado increased its holdings in shares of Viacom by 3.5% in the fourth quarter. Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado now owns 65,795 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,027,000 after purchasing an additional 2,240 shares during the period. 80.99% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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Viacom Company Profile

Viacom, Inc operates media brands that create entertainment content worldwide. The company creates television programs, motion pictures, short-form content, games, consumer products, podcasts, live events, and social media experiences. It operates through two segments, Media Networks and Filmed Entertainment.

Analyst Recommendations for Viacom (NASDAQ:VIAB)

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