Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Square (NYSE:SQ) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report issued on Wednesday morning. They currently have $68.00 price objective on the technology company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Square continues to benefit from its growing gross payments volume. Further, contributions from Weebly and Zesty buyouts remain major positives. Additionally, strong product lines such as Virtual Terminal, Instant Deposits, Cash Card, Square Register and Caviar are performing well. Hence, these are aiding the company’s top-line growth. Also, improving business loan processing via Square Capital is a tailwind. Further, growing adoption of Cash App in the bitcoin space remains positive for Square’s business growth. Notably, the stock has outperformed the industry it belongs to over a year. However, higher investments and increasing product development expenses might hurt margins. Further, intensifying competition and foreign exchange fluctuations remain headwinds.”

A number of other brokerages have also weighed in on SQ. Evercore ISI set a $101.00 price objective on shares of Square and gave the company an outperform rating in a report on Friday, September 21st. Goldman Sachs Group boosted their price objective on shares of Square from $77.00 to $108.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Monday, October 8th. KeyCorp reissued an overweight rating and set a $115.00 price objective (up from $75.00) on shares of Square in a report on Tuesday, October 2nd. Cantor Fitzgerald reissued an overweight rating and set a $91.00 price objective (up from $76.00) on shares of Square in a report on Thursday, November 8th. Finally, Craig Hallum boosted their price objective on shares of Square from $37.00 to $55.00 and gave the company a sell rating in a report on Thursday, November 8th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and twenty-two have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Square currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $83.82.

Shares of SQ opened at $66.23 on Wednesday. The firm has a market cap of $27.26 billion, a PE ratio of -662.30, a P/E/G ratio of 32.29 and a beta of 3.79. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.80, a quick ratio of 1.54 and a current ratio of 1.54. Square has a 1-year low of $36.76 and a 1-year high of $101.15.

Square (NYSE:SQ) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, November 7th. The technology company reported $0.13 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.11 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $431.00 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $414.19 million. Square had a negative net margin of 0.87% and a negative return on equity of 1.11%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 67.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.07 earnings per share. Sell-side analysts anticipate that Square will post -0.02 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Square news, Director James Morgan Jr. Mckelvey sold 400,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, October 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $72.32, for a total value of $28,928,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 472,275 shares in the company, valued at $34,154,928. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CEO Jack Dorsey sold 103,035 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, October 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $71.78, for a total transaction of $7,395,852.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 2,620,097 shares of company stock valued at $176,615,860. Insiders own 27.99% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. New England Research & Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Square in the fourth quarter worth about $463,000. State of Alaska Department of Revenue raised its position in shares of Square by 3.1% in the fourth quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 36,157 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $2,028,000 after acquiring an additional 1,096 shares during the period. Cerebellum GP LLC acquired a new position in shares of Square in the fourth quarter worth about $235,000. Private Asset Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Square during the 4th quarter worth about $293,000. Finally, CENTRAL TRUST Co raised its position in shares of Square by 18.3% during the 4th quarter. CENTRAL TRUST Co now owns 10,896 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $611,000 after purchasing an additional 1,689 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 47.96% of the company’s stock.

Square Company Profile

Square, Inc provides payment and point-of-sale solutions in the United States and internationally. The company's commerce ecosystem includes point-of-sale software and hardware that enables sellers to turn mobile and computing devices into payment and point-of-sale solutions. It offers hardware products, including Magstripe reader, which enables swiped transactions of magnetic stripe cards; Contactless and chip reader that accepts EMV® chip cards and Near Field Communication payments; Chip card reader, which accepts EMV® chip cards and enables swiped transactions of magnetic stripe cards; Square Stand, which enables an iPad to be used as a payment terminal or full point of sale solution; and Square Register that combines its hardware, point-of-sale software, and payments technology, as well as managed payments solutions.

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