Rite Aid (NYSE:RAD) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Rite Aid outperformed the industry in the last three months as it remains on track with the transferring of stores and related assets to Walgreens in a phased manner. So far, the company has transferred 625 stores and related assets to Walgreens, generating net cash proceeds of $1,309.8 million. This will be used to pay down debt and strengthen liquidity position. Moreover, the company’s efforts to boost market share through wellness remodels and other strategic initiatives bode well. Though the company’s break-even bottom line results surpassed estimates in third-quarter fiscal 2018, its dismal top-line trends due to unfavorable reimbursement rates and soft same store sales remains an impediment. Notably, Rite Aid has delivered negative sales surprise in four of the trailing six quarters due to soft comps as well as decline in revenues at key business segments. Estimates have been stable lately.”

Other analysts also recently issued reports about the company. Vetr downgraded Rite Aid from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $2.47 price target for the company. in a research note on Thursday, January 11th. Deutsche Bank started coverage on Rite Aid in a research note on Monday, December 4th. They issued a “hold” rating and a $2.25 price target for the company. Royal Bank of Canada set a $2.00 price target on Rite Aid and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 25th. Finally, Evercore ISI started coverage on Rite Aid in a research note on Thursday, January 4th. They issued an “underperform” rating and a $1.50 price target for the company. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating, two have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $2.75.

Rite Aid (NYSE RAD) remained flat at $$2.06 on Monday. 8,345,527 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 26,647,654. The firm has a market capitalization of $2,200.00, a P/E ratio of 18.68 and a beta of 1.76. Rite Aid has a 52-week low of $1.38 and a 52-week high of $6.15. The company has a current ratio of 0.86, a quick ratio of 0.59 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 3.66.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in RAD. State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D lifted its holdings in shares of Rite Aid by 1.7% in the third quarter. State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D now owns 6,100,000 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,956,000 after purchasing an additional 100,000 shares in the last quarter. Cowen Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Rite Aid by 173.9% in the third quarter. Cowen Inc. now owns 858,400 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,682,000 after buying an additional 545,000 shares during the period. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Rite Aid by 34.2% in the third quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 3,896,788 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,638,000 after buying an additional 992,918 shares during the period. ING Groep NV increased its holdings in shares of Rite Aid by 176.6% in the third quarter. ING Groep NV now owns 478,600 shares of the company’s stock worth $938,000 after buying an additional 305,600 shares during the period. Finally, Stifel Financial Corp increased its holdings in shares of Rite Aid by 71.5% in the second quarter. Stifel Financial Corp now owns 457,561 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,343,000 after buying an additional 190,731 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 49.55% of the company’s stock.

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Rite Aid Company Profile

Rite Aid Corporation is a retail drugstore chain. The Company’s segments include Retail Pharmacy and Pharmacy Services. The Company operates under The Rite Aid name. It operates approximately 4,560 stores in over 30 states across the country and in the District of Columbia. The Company’s Retail Pharmacy segment consists of Rite Aid stores, RediClinic and Health Dialog.

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