Charter Communications (CHTR) Cut to Sell at Zacks Investment Research
Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.
According to Zacks, “Shares of Charter have declined in the past-year primarily due to sluggish growth in a saturated and competitive multi-channel U.S. video market. The company continues to face stiff competition from online TV streaming service providers. We also view the company's high debt level and consolidation-related woes as potential hazards. However, we appreciate the company’s wireless venture, along with plans to offer its wireless service in 2018. The company’s residential and commercial internet and voice customer growth continues to accelerate, evident from the revenue growth and subscriber gain. Meanwhile, the company has mixed record of earnings surprises in recent quarters.”
Other equities analysts also recently issued research reports about the company. TheStreet upgraded Charter Communications from a “c” rating to a “b+” rating in a report on Friday, February 2nd. Argus reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $450.00 target price on shares of Charter Communications in a report on Wednesday, February 21st. SunTrust Banks upped their target price on Charter Communications to $440.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, February 5th. Pivotal Research reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $500.00 target price (up previously from $420.00) on shares of Charter Communications in a report on Monday, February 5th. Finally, Citigroup reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $436.00 target price (down previously from $453.00) on shares of Charter Communications in a report on Wednesday, February 7th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and fifteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $405.50.
Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Friday, February 2nd. The company reported $0.86 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.85 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $10.60 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $10.60 billion. Charter Communications had a return on equity of 1.11% and a net margin of 23.80%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.67 EPS. research analysts forecast that Charter Communications will post 3.88 EPS for the current fiscal year.
In related news, EVP Jonathan Hargis sold 27,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $364.76, for a total value of $9,848,520.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 34,931 shares in the company, valued at $12,741,431.56. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Corporate insiders own 0.83% of the company’s stock.
A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Franklin Resources Inc. increased its holdings in Charter Communications by 0.8% in the fourth quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 2,794,891 shares of the company’s stock worth $938,985,000 after buying an additional 22,408 shares during the last quarter. Brown Advisory Inc. increased its holdings in Charter Communications by 30.0% in the fourth quarter. Brown Advisory Inc. now owns 770,692 shares of the company’s stock worth $258,920,000 after buying an additional 178,003 shares during the last quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System increased its holdings in Charter Communications by 33.7% in the fourth quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 619,620 shares of the company’s stock worth $208,168,000 after buying an additional 156,169 shares during the last quarter. Triple Frond Partners LLC boosted its position in Charter Communications by 55.1% during the fourth quarter. Triple Frond Partners LLC now owns 606,029 shares of the company’s stock worth $203,602,000 after purchasing an additional 215,400 shares during the period. Finally, Farallon Capital Management LLC boosted its position in Charter Communications by 142.4% during the fourth quarter. Farallon Capital Management LLC now owns 463,625 shares of the company’s stock worth $155,759,000 after purchasing an additional 272,370 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 72.26% of the company’s stock.
About Charter Communications
Charter Communications, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides cable services to residential and commercial customers in the United States. It offers subscription-based video services, including video on demand, high definition television, digital video recorder, pay-per-view, spectrum guide services, and a package of basic video programming, as well as ad-supported free online video products.
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