Lululemon Athletica (NASDAQ:LULU) Shares Gap Up on Analyst Upgrade

Lululemon Athletica inc. (NASDAQ:LULU) gapped up prior to trading on Friday after DA Davidson raised their price target on the stock to $180.00. The stock had previously closed at $167.05, but opened at $174.52. DA Davidson currently has a neutral rating on the stock. Lululemon Athletica shares last traded at $176.01, with a volume of 2052250 shares.

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently weighed in on LULU. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price objective on shares of Lululemon Athletica from $197.00 to $200.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Thursday. Deutsche Bank upped their price objective on shares of Lululemon Athletica from $204.00 to $205.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday. Stifel Nicolaus upped their price objective on shares of Lululemon Athletica from $187.00 to $209.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday. Wells Fargo & Co set a $210.00 price objective on shares of Lululemon Athletica and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a report on Thursday. Finally, Telsey Advisory Group reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $205.00 target price (up previously from $200.00) on shares of Lululemon Athletica in a research note on Thursday. Eleven research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twenty-two have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $187.33.

In related news, COO Stuart Haselden sold 49,319 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, March 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $164.62, for a total transaction of $8,118,893.78. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 24,685 shares in the company, valued at $4,063,644.70. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Michelle Sun Choe sold 6,170 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, April 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $170.92, for a total transaction of $1,054,576.40. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 11,294 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,930,370.48. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 519,344 shares of company stock worth $79,873,942. 0.32% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of LULU. Morgan Stanley boosted its position in shares of Lululemon Athletica by 11.4% during the third quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 758,152 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $123,192,000 after buying an additional 77,767 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc boosted its position in shares of Lululemon Athletica by 10.6% during the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 9,411,318 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $1,529,244,000 after buying an additional 899,080 shares during the period. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Lululemon Athletica during the fourth quarter worth about $134,000. Rhumbline Advisers boosted its position in shares of Lululemon Athletica by 2.8% during the fourth quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 102,491 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $12,464,000 after buying an additional 2,832 shares during the period. Finally, TD Asset Management Inc. boosted its position in shares of Lululemon Athletica by 495.5% during the fourth quarter. TD Asset Management Inc. now owns 39,717 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $4,830,000 after buying an additional 33,048 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 80.78% of the company’s stock.

The stock has a market capitalization of $22.38 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 45.84, a PEG ratio of 2.02 and a beta of 0.60.

Lululemon Athletica (NASDAQ:LULU) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, June 12th. The apparel retailer reported $0.74 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.70 by $0.04. Lululemon Athletica had a return on equity of 38.60% and a net margin of 14.77%. The firm had revenue of $782.30 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $755.92 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.55 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 20.4% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities analysts predict that Lululemon Athletica inc. will post 4.6 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Lululemon Athletica declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock repurchase plan on Wednesday, March 27th that authorizes the company to buyback $500.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the apparel retailer to purchase up to 2.6% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

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About Lululemon Athletica (NASDAQ:LULU)

lululemon athletica inc., together with its subsidiaries, designs, distributes, and retails athletic apparel and accessories for women, men, and female youth. It operates through two segments, Company-Operated Stores and Direct to Consumer. The company offers pants, shorts, tops, and jackets for healthy lifestyle and athletic activities, such as yoga, running, and training, as well as other sweaty pursuits; and athletic wear for female youth.

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