Akamai Technologies (AKAM) Stock Rating Lowered by Zacks Investment Research

Akamai Technologies (NASDAQ:AKAM) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Friday.

According to Zacks, “Akamai is a global provider of content delivery network (CDN) and cloud infrastructure services. Robust performance from cloud security solutions driven by strong demand for Kona Site Defender and Prolexic Solutions, as well as new Bot Manager Premier and Nominum Services are growth drivers. Management is positive about the robust over-the top (OTT) content viewing. With increased adoption of mobile data/apps and growing mobile data traffic Akamai is well positioned for long-term growth. Also, strong balance sheet and cash flow will help the company in future acquisitions and share repurchase. However, Akamai recently lowered guidance for the second quarter and fiscal year 2018, citing a stronger dollar headwind. Further, intensifying competition in the core CDN space is a concern.”

Several other analysts also recently issued reports on the stock. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Akamai Technologies from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, June 26th. TheStreet raised shares of Akamai Technologies from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 9th. ValuEngine raised shares of Akamai Technologies from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 2nd. FBN Securities raised their price objective on shares of Akamai Technologies to $80.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 1st. Finally, Morgan Stanley raised their price objective on shares of Akamai Technologies from $75.00 to $82.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 1st. Ten investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, fifteen have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Akamai Technologies presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $75.07.

Shares of Akamai Technologies opened at $73.23 on Friday, according to Marketbeat. The stock has a market capitalization of $12.37 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 38.54, a PEG ratio of 2.05 and a beta of 0.64. Akamai Technologies has a 1 year low of $44.65 and a 1 year high of $83.08.

Akamai Technologies (NASDAQ:AKAM) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Monday, April 30th. The technology infrastructure company reported $0.79 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.70 by $0.09. The business had revenue of $669.00 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $654.37 million. Akamai Technologies had a net margin of 7.46% and a return on equity of 10.04%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 11.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.69 earnings per share. equities analysts forecast that Akamai Technologies will post 2.46 EPS for the current year.

Akamai Technologies declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback plan on Thursday, March 8th that allows the company to buyback $417.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the technology infrastructure company to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

In other Akamai Technologies news, insider Rick M. Mcconnell sold 12,618 shares of Akamai Technologies stock in a transaction on Wednesday, April 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $69.76, for a total value of $880,231.68. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 32,434 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,262,595.84. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Robert Blumofe sold 8,379 shares of Akamai Technologies stock in a transaction on Monday, April 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.81, for a total transaction of $593,316.99. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 49,879 shares of company stock worth $3,600,647. 3.20% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in AKAM. Clearbridge Investments LLC grew its holdings in Akamai Technologies by 5.5% in the fourth quarter. Clearbridge Investments LLC now owns 9,105,713 shares of the technology infrastructure company’s stock worth $592,236,000 after purchasing an additional 474,271 shares during the last quarter. Element Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Akamai Technologies during the fourth quarter valued at $24,754,000. Freshford Capital Management LLC grew its holdings in shares of Akamai Technologies by 43.4% during the fourth quarter. Freshford Capital Management LLC now owns 815,071 shares of the technology infrastructure company’s stock valued at $53,012,000 after buying an additional 246,875 shares during the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc grew its holdings in shares of Akamai Technologies by 27.4% during the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 1,068,324 shares of the technology infrastructure company’s stock valued at $75,815,000 after buying an additional 229,564 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. grew its holdings in shares of Akamai Technologies by 1,242.9% during the first quarter. Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. now owns 205,179 shares of the technology infrastructure company’s stock valued at $14,563,000 after buying an additional 189,900 shares during the last quarter. 91.44% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Akamai Technologies

Akamai Technologies, Inc provides cloud services for delivering, optimizing, and securing content and business applications over the Internet in the United States and internationally. The company offers Web and mobile performance solutions, such as Ion, a situational performance solution; Dynamic Site Accelerator that helps in consistent Website performance; Image Manager that automatically optimizes online images; CloudTest to conduct load testing and other analysis of Websites in a pre-production environment; mPulse that provides real-time Website performance data to provide insight about end-user experiences on a Website; and Global Traffic Management, a fault-tolerant solution.

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