Weyerhaeuser (WY) Cut to “Sell” at Zacks Investment Research
Weyerhaeuser (NYSE:WY) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued to investors on Saturday.
According to Zacks, “In the last three months, Weyerhaeuser's shares have underperformed the industry and look overvalued comparatively. In the fourth quarter of 2017, the company's earnings and revenues lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 11.4% and 2.5%, respectively. Also, costs of sales in the quarter jumped 3% year over year. For the first quarter of 2018, the company predicts that earnings and adjusted EBITDA for the Real Estate, Energy & Natural Resources segment will be lower sequentially due to weakness in real estate sales and a decline in royalties generated from the Energy and Natural Resources businesses. Also, the company faces headwinds from high debt levels (roughly at $5.9 billion at the fourth-quarter end), unfavorable foreign currency movements and industry competition, which might restrict its growth in the quarters ahead.”
Several other brokerages have also recently issued reports on WY. Bank of America raised shares of Weyerhaeuser from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 24th. Argus lifted their target price on shares of Weyerhaeuser from $37.00 to $39.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, November 2nd. TheStreet raised shares of Weyerhaeuser from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 8th. Finally, Stephens initiated coverage on shares of Weyerhaeuser in a research report on Tuesday, October 24th. They issued an “equal weight” rating and a $35.00 target price on the stock. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $37.44.
Weyerhaeuser (NYSE:WY) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Friday, February 2nd. The real estate investment trust reported $0.31 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.35 by ($0.04). The business had revenue of $1.82 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.89 billion. Weyerhaeuser had a return on equity of 9.62% and a net margin of 8.09%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 14.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.14 EPS. equities research analysts forecast that Weyerhaeuser will post 1.34 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
In other news, insider Rhonda D. Hunter sold 23,343 shares of Weyerhaeuser stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.12, for a total value of $843,149.16. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 98,973 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,574,904.76. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Company insiders own 1.20% of the company’s stock.
Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Trust Co. of Vermont grew its position in Weyerhaeuser by 4.3% during the third quarter. Trust Co. of Vermont now owns 78,401 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $2,668,000 after purchasing an additional 3,231 shares in the last quarter. Eagle Ridge Investment Management grew its position in Weyerhaeuser by 3.0% during the fourth quarter. Eagle Ridge Investment Management now owns 189,348 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $6,676,000 after purchasing an additional 5,439 shares in the last quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC grew its position in Weyerhaeuser by 8.2% during the third quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC now owns 359,958 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $12,249,000 after purchasing an additional 27,233 shares in the last quarter. Asset Management One Co. Ltd. grew its position in Weyerhaeuser by 0.6% during the third quarter. Asset Management One Co. Ltd. now owns 1,197,067 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $40,735,000 after purchasing an additional 7,084 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Schroder Investment Management Group grew its position in Weyerhaeuser by 11.8% during the third quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 184,820 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $6,286,000 after purchasing an additional 19,570 shares in the last quarter. 74.79% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
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Weyerhaeuser Company is a timber, land and forest products company. As of December 31, 2016, the Company owned or controlled 13.1 million acres of timberlands, primarily in the United States, and manages additional timberlands under long-term licenses in Canada. The Company’s segments include Timberlands; Real Estate, Energy and Natural Resources (Real Estate & ENR), and Wood Products.
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