Shares of Acuity Brands Inc. (NYSE:AYI) gapped up prior to trading on Tuesday . The stock had previously closed at $277.13, but opened at $277.54. Acuity Brands shares last traded at $279.53, with a volume of 64,212 shares traded.

Several research firms have issued reports on AYI. Canaccord Genuity restated a “buy” rating on shares of Acuity Brands in a research report on Wednesday, June 29th. Roth Capital began coverage on shares of Acuity Brands in a research report on Thursday. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $275.00 price target on the stock. Credit Agricole SA restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $270.00 price target on shares of Acuity Brands in a research report on Friday, July 1st. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Acuity Brands from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, June 7th. Finally, William Blair reiterated an “outperform” rating on shares of Acuity Brands in a research report on Monday, July 25th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $274.25.

The stock’s 50-day moving average is $267.55 and its 200 day moving average is $243.07. The stock has a market capitalization of $12.01 billion and a PE ratio of 45.10.

Acuity Brands (NYSE:AYI) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, June 29th. The company reported $2.06 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.03 by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $851.50 million for the quarter. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 24.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.37 earnings per share. On average, analysts predict that Acuity Brands Inc. will post $8.01 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, August 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, July 18th were given a dividend of $0.13 per share. This represents a $0.52 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.19%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, July 14th.

In other news, CEO Vernon J. Nagel sold 65,060 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, July 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $268.30, for a total value of $17,455,598.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Director Ray M. Robinson sold 786 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $248.55, for a total transaction of $195,360.30. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 2,000 shares in the company, valued at $497,100. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A hedge fund recently raised its stake in Acuity Brands stock. Advisors Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Acuity Brands Inc. (NYSE:AYI) by 24.9% during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 8,494 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 1,694 shares during the period. Advisors Asset Management Inc.’s holdings in Acuity Brands were worth $1,986,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Acuity Brands, Inc (Acuity Brands), is the parent company of Acuity Brands Lighting, Inc (ABL), and other subsidiaries. Acuity Brands is a provider of lighting solutions for commercial, institutional, industrial, infrastructure, and residential applications throughout North America and select international markets.

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