Vmware, Inc. (NYSE:VMW) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Thursday. The brokerage currently has a $99.00 price target on the virtualization software provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target suggests a potential upside of 12.03% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “VMware has outperformed the  S&P 500 index on a year-to-date basis. The company continues to benefit from robust performance of its product offerings like NSX, AirWatch, vSphere and vSAN. The company's innovative product pipeline, strategic partnerships, frequent contract wins and robust international sales are expected to drive overall results.  We believe that the impressive first-quarter results and positive fiscal year guidance (up from the previous guidance) driven by expanding product portfolio, partnerships and continuing enterprise deal wins will help the stock maintain momentum in the rest of fiscal 2018. However lackluster IT spending and mounting competition are the headwinds.”

Other research analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “buy” rating and set a $110.00 price target (up previously from $105.00) on shares of Vmware in a research report on Saturday, June 3rd. MKM Partners restated a “buy” rating and set a $110.00 price target (up previously from $100.00) on shares of Vmware in a research report on Thursday, June 1st. Morgan Stanley restated an “overweight” rating and set a $107.00 price target (up previously from $100.00) on shares of Vmware in a research report on Saturday, June 3rd. Barclays PLC upgraded shares of Vmware to a “hold” rating and set a $100.00 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, June 5th. Finally, Drexel Hamilton restated a “buy” rating and set a $113.00 price target (up previously from $105.00) on shares of Vmware in a research report on Monday, June 5th. Eighteen equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $95.36.

Vmware (NYSE:VMW) traded up 2.13% during midday trading on Thursday, reaching $90.25. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 855,541 shares. The stock has a market cap of $36.86 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 32.49 and a beta of 0.76. Vmware has a one year low of $60.82 and a one year high of $98.00. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $91.98 and its 200-day moving average price is $89.17.

Vmware (NYSE:VMW) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, June 1st. The virtualization software provider reported $0.99 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.95 by $0.04. The business had revenue of $1.74 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.71 billion. Vmware had a net margin of 17.36% and a return on equity of 17.19%. The company’s revenue was up 9.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.86 earnings per share. On average, analysts forecast that Vmware will post $4.93 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other news, EVP Maurizio Carli sold 11,237 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, June 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $94.66, for a total value of $1,063,694.42. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director Egon Durban sold 666,354 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $89.14, for a total transaction of $59,398,795.56. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 698,048 shares of company stock valued at $62,259,433. Company insiders own 0.52% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Dodge & Cox bought a new position in shares of Vmware during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $745,926,000. Boston Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of Vmware during the first quarter valued at approximately $14,209,000. Wells Fargo & Company MN raised its position in shares of Vmware by 163.9% in the first quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 1,612,242 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $148,552,000 after buying an additional 1,001,289 shares during the period. FMR LLC raised its position in shares of Vmware by 215.5% in the fourth quarter. FMR LLC now owns 536,973 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $42,276,000 after buying an additional 366,750 shares during the period. Finally, Guggenheim Capital LLC raised its position in shares of Vmware by 202.3% in the fourth quarter. Guggenheim Capital LLC now owns 48,708 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $3,835,000 after buying an additional 32,597 shares during the period. 21.86% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Vmware

VMware, Inc is an information technology (IT) company. The Company is engaged in development and application of virtualization technologies with x86 server-based computing, separating application software from the underlying hardware. The Company offers various products, which allow organizations to manage IT resources across private clouds and multi-cloud, multi-device environments by leveraging synergies across three product categories: Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC), Hybrid Cloud Computing and End-User Computing (EUC).

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