Zacks Investment Research Lowers Lowe’s (LOW) to Sell

Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Lowe’s have declined in the past three months. The company has been delivering lower-than-expected bottom line results for two consecutive quarters. Incidentally, performance during first-quarter fiscal 2018 was negatively impacted by unfavorable weather conditions in several regions, which led to delayed spring season sales. This in turn dented performance in the company’s outdoor categories. Further, the quarter witnessed higher SG&A expenses which dragged operating income. Persistence of such headwinds is a threat to Lowe’s performance in the forthcoming periods. On the flip side, the company has been delivering sturdy comps growth, courtesy of well-chalked brand and sales augmenting efforts in stores and from an omni-channel perspective. Also, the company’s focus on enhancing services to Pro customers is encouraging and has been yielding.”

Other research analysts also recently issued reports about the company. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $124.00 price objective (up from $103.00) on shares of Lowe’s in a report on Wednesday, January 24th. Deutsche Bank set a $107.00 price objective on Lowe’s and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, March 1st. Jefferies Group upgraded Lowe’s from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price objective for the stock from $81.00 to $129.00 in a report on Monday, February 5th. Gabelli started coverage on Lowe’s in a report on Wednesday, April 11th. They set a “buy” rating and a $113.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Credit Suisse Group set a $111.00 price objective on Lowe’s and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, May 14th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and twenty-five have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $100.03.

Shares of Lowe’s traded up $0.34, reaching $95.03, during mid-day trading on Thursday, Marketbeat.com reports. 376,865 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 5,516,256. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.65, a quick ratio of 0.11 and a current ratio of 1.06. The company has a market cap of $71.17 billion, a PE ratio of 21.62, a PEG ratio of 0.90 and a beta of 1.33. Lowe’s has a one year low of $70.76 and a one year high of $108.98.

Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 23rd. The home improvement retailer reported $1.19 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.22 by ($0.03). The firm had revenue of $17.36 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $17.44 billion. Lowe’s had a return on equity of 65.17% and a net margin of 5.02%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 3.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $1.03 earnings per share. research analysts predict that Lowe’s will post 5.46 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Lowe’s announced that its board has initiated a share buyback plan on Friday, January 26th that allows the company to repurchase $5.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the home improvement retailer to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Almanack Investment Partners LLC. acquired a new stake in Lowe’s during the 4th quarter worth approximately $106,000. ClariVest Asset Management LLC acquired a new stake in Lowe’s during the 1st quarter worth approximately $118,000. Truewealth LLC acquired a new stake in Lowe’s during the 4th quarter worth approximately $128,000. Rainier Group Investment Advisory LLC acquired a new stake in Lowe’s during the 1st quarter worth approximately $121,000. Finally, Cerebellum GP LLC acquired a new stake in Lowe’s during the 4th quarter worth approximately $129,000. 72.83% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Lowe’s Company Profile

Lowe's Companies, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a home improvement retailer in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. It offers a line of products for maintenance, repair, remodeling, and decorating. The company provides home improvement products in various categories, such as lumber and building materials, tools and hardware, appliances, fashion fixtures, rough plumbing and electrical, seasonal and outdoor living, lawn and garden, paint, millwork, flooring, and kitchens, as well as outdoor power equipment.

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Analyst Recommendations for Lowe`s (NYSE:LOW)

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