Qualys (QLYS) Trading 2.1% Higher

Shares of Qualys (NASDAQ:QLYS) traded up 2.1% on Wednesday . The company traded as high as $83.30 and last traded at $84.55. 230,657 shares traded hands during trading, a decline of 20% from the average session volume of 288,041 shares. The stock had previously closed at $82.85.

A number of analysts have weighed in on the stock. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Qualys from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday. Needham & Company LLC reissued a “buy” rating and set a $85.00 target price (up previously from $80.00) on shares of Qualys in a research report on Tuesday, March 6th. First Analysis reissued a “weight” rating and set a $80.00 target price (up previously from $70.00) on shares of Qualys in a research report on Friday, February 23rd. Imperial Capital reissued an “outperform” rating and set a $83.00 target price (up previously from $62.00) on shares of Qualys in a research report on Thursday, February 22nd. Finally, BidaskClub raised shares of Qualys from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, February 15th. Ten research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, four have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $68.92.

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The stock has a market capitalization of $3,200.37, a P/E ratio of 91.94, a P/E/G ratio of 5.67 and a beta of 0.84.

Qualys (NASDAQ:QLYS) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Monday, February 12th. The software maker reported $0.32 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.28 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $62.90 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $61.96 million. Qualys had a net margin of 17.52% and a return on equity of 16.69%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 20.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.23 EPS. sell-side analysts anticipate that Qualys will post 0.86 EPS for the current year.

Qualys announced that its board has initiated a stock repurchase plan on Monday, February 12th that allows the company to repurchase $100.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the software maker to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

In related news, insider Sumedh S. Thakar sold 9,801 shares of Qualys stock in a transaction on Friday, February 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.70, for a total value of $575,318.70. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 192,280 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $11,286,836. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, VP Amer Deeba sold 2,000 shares of Qualys stock in a transaction on Thursday, February 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.71, for a total transaction of $125,420.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 66,644 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,179,245.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 57,801 shares of company stock valued at $3,908,539. 20.90% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. acquired a new stake in Qualys in the 4th quarter valued at $234,000. DF Dent & Co. Inc. acquired a new stake in Qualys in the 4th quarter valued at $7,330,000. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Qualys in the 4th quarter valued at $881,000. Macquarie Group Ltd. grew its position in Qualys by 600.0% in the 4th quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 8,400 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $499,000 after purchasing an additional 7,200 shares during the period. Finally, LPL Financial LLC acquired a new stake in Qualys in the 4th quarter valued at $219,000. 79.48% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Qualys

Qualys, Inc provides cloud-based security and compliance solutions in the United States and internationally. The company offers Qualys Cloud Apps, which includes Asset Inventory, CMDB Sync, Vulnerability Management, Continuous Monitoring, Cloud Agent, Threat Protection, Security Configuration Assessment, Indication of Compromise, Policy Compliance, PCI Compliance, Security Assessment Questionnaire, File Integrity Monitoring, Web Application Scanning, and Web Application Firewall.

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