Morgan Stanley upgraded shares of Nike, Inc. (NYSE:NKE) from an equal weight rating to an overweight rating in a research report released on Wednesday, MarketBeat.com reports. Morgan Stanley currently has $68.00 price target on the footwear maker’s stock, up from their prior price target of $56.00.

A number of other research analysts also recently issued reports on the company. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) reiterated a buy rating and set a $62.00 price objective on shares of Nike in a research note on Tuesday, April 18th. Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a buy rating and set a $64.00 price objective on shares of Nike in a research note on Saturday, April 22nd. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a buy rating and set a $75.00 price objective on shares of Nike in a research note on Friday, May 5th. Berenberg Bank initiated coverage on Nike in a research note on Tuesday, May 16th. They set a buy rating and a $70.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Vetr upgraded Nike from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating and set a $63.24 price objective for the company in a research note on Wednesday, March 22nd. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have given a hold rating and twenty-one have given a buy rating to the company. Nike presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $60.95.

Nike (NYSE:NKE) traded up 1.44% during trading on Wednesday, hitting $59.95. 11,048,297 shares of the stock were exchanged. The firm has a market capitalization of $98.73 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.88 and a beta of 0.60. Nike has a 1-year low of $49.01 and a 1-year high of $60.33. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $55.02 and a 200 day moving average price of $54.92.

Nike (NYSE:NKE) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, June 29th. The footwear maker reported $0.60 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.50 by $0.10. The company had revenue of $8.68 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $8.63 billion. Nike had a return on equity of 34.18% and a net margin of 12.34%. The firm’s revenue was up 5.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.49 EPS. Equities analysts predict that Nike will post $2.43 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, July 5th. Investors of record on Monday, June 5th were given a dividend of $0.18 per share. This represents a $0.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.20%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, June 1st. Nike’s payout ratio is currently 28.69%.

In related news, insider Eric D. Sprunk sold 50,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $59.00, for a total transaction of $2,950,000.00. Following the sale, the insider now owns 300,108 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $17,706,372. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CAO Hilary K. Krane sold 28,072 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.10, for a total value of $1,630,983.20. Following the sale, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 177,723 shares in the company, valued at approximately $10,325,706.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 374,315 shares of company stock worth $21,562,036. 3.90% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Cigna Investments Inc. New acquired a new stake in shares of Nike during the fourth quarter valued at $2,503,000. Capital International Inc. CA increased its stake in shares of Nike by 41.9% in the fourth quarter. Capital International Inc. CA now owns 25,250 shares of the footwear maker’s stock valued at $1,283,000 after buying an additional 7,450 shares in the last quarter. Horizon Kinetics LLC increased its stake in shares of Nike by 8.1% in the fourth quarter. Horizon Kinetics LLC now owns 8,858 shares of the footwear maker’s stock valued at $451,000 after buying an additional 665 shares in the last quarter. Congress Asset Management Co. MA acquired a new stake in shares of Nike during the fourth quarter valued at $4,395,000. Finally, Denver Investment Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Nike by 18.0% in the fourth quarter. Denver Investment Advisors LLC now owns 15,142 shares of the footwear maker’s stock valued at $770,000 after buying an additional 2,305 shares in the last quarter. 63.98% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Nike Company Profile

NIKE, Inc is engaged in the design, development, marketing and selling of athletic footwear, apparel, equipment, accessories and services. The Company’s operating segments include North America, Western Europe, Central & Eastern Europe, Greater China, Japan and Emerging Markets. Its portfolio brands include the NIKE Brand, Jordan Brand, Hurley and Converse.

Analyst Recommendations for Nike (NYSE:NKE)

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