Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a note issued to investors on Friday.

According to Zacks, “Over the past one year, Ericsson’s shares have underperformed the industry’s average return. Ericsson also has a dreadful earnings history – with huge, consecutive earnings misses over the trailing four quarters. Ericsson has warned that an uncertain market could wipe out nearly SEK 5 billion of operating income over the next year. There is also an increased risk of market and customer project adjustments, which can have a negative impact of SEK 3-5 billion on the operating income in the coming year. Escalating restructuring expenses and spectrum crunch may pose as significant headwinds, going forward. Soft emerging market conditions, completion of major projects and adverse industry trends added to the woes. On the positive side, Ericsson plans to invest in R&D to fortify Networks business and intends to stabilize IT & Cloud roadmaps.”

Other research analysts also recently issued research reports about the company. BidaskClub downgraded Ericsson from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, August 12th. Societe Generale began coverage on Ericsson in a report on Wednesday, June 14th. They set a “hold” rating on the stock. Canaccord Genuity reaffirmed a “neutral – hold” rating and set a $7.00 price objective on shares of Ericsson in a report on Friday, June 30th. Credit Suisse Group AG downgraded Ericsson from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and reduced their price objective for the stock from $6.00 to $4.65 in a report on Tuesday. Finally, BNP Paribas raised Ericsson from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Thursday, September 21st. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have issued a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $5.54.

Shares of Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) opened at 5.68 on Friday. Ericsson has a 1-year low of $4.83 and a 1-year high of $7.47.

Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 18th. The communications equipment provider reported $0.02 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.05 by ($0.03). Ericsson had a negative return on equity of 3.16% and a negative net margin of 6.40%. The firm had revenue of $49.90 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $50.66 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.83 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 7.8% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts predict that Ericsson will post $0.11 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Folketrygdfondet raised its stake in Ericsson by 26.8% during the 2nd quarter. Folketrygdfondet now owns 8,432,504 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $60,461,000 after buying an additional 1,780,000 shares during the period. Credit Suisse AG raised its stake in Ericsson by 912.8% during the 1st quarter. Credit Suisse AG now owns 4,542,361 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $30,161,000 after buying an additional 4,093,879 shares during the period. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC raised its stake in Ericsson by 1.8% during the 2nd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 3,167,532 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $22,711,000 after buying an additional 54,557 shares during the period. Sei Investments Co. raised its stake in Ericsson by 215.4% during the 2nd quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 2,986,334 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $21,412,000 after buying an additional 2,039,348 shares during the period. Finally, Northern Trust Corp raised its stake in Ericsson by 1.5% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 2,772,399 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $19,878,000 after buying an additional 41,831 shares during the period. 7.95% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Ericsson Company Profile

Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson (Ericsson) provides infrastructure, services and software to the telecommunication industry and other sectors. The Company’s segments include Networks, IT & Cloud and Media. The Networks segment consists of two business units: Network Products and Network Services. The overall focus is on evolving and managing access networks, including the development of hardware and software for radio access and transport networks.

Analyst Recommendations for Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC)

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