Big Lots Upgraded to “Neutral” by JPMorgan Chase & Co. (BIG)
Big Lots (NYSE:BIG) was upgraded by JPMorgan Chase & Co. from an “underweight” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note issued on Monday, TheFlyOnTheWall.com reports. The firm currently has a $32.00 target price on the stock, up from their previous target price of $28.00. JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s target price suggests a potential downside of 0.78% from the company’s current price.
The analysts wrote, “We are upgrading Big Lots to Neutral from Underweight with the risk/reward more balanced following 40% underperformance over the past year (-22% vs. SPX +18%). While structural questions remain (30K sq ft boxes, closeout competition, online), the setup has changed since our downgrade to Underweight last year (8/10/12: Micro Issues & Discretionary Mix; Wrong Place at The Wrong Time; Downgrade to UW) given the combination of (1) easing discretionary comparisons (Home & Furniture compares ease ~500bps in 2H), (2) 3 initiative tests in process (coolers/SNAP, remodel program, and urban stores), and (3) new management at the helm (CEO on 4/30) with the stock now pricing in a 2Q miss and 2H guidance reduction (trading sub-5x EBITDA) given lateral retail prints, in our view.”
A number of other analysts have also recently weighed in on BIG. Analysts at TheStreet upgraded shares of Big Lots from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note to investors on Thursday, August 15th. Separately, analysts at FBR & Co. initiated coverage on shares of Big Lots in a research note to investors on Friday, July 19th. They set a “market perform” rating on the stock. Finally, analysts at FBR Capital Markets initiated coverage on shares of Big Lots in a research note to investors on Friday, July 19th. They set a “market perform” rating and a $35.00 price target on the stock.
Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $35.63.
Shares of Big Lots (NYSE:BIG) traded up 5.33% during mid-day trading on Monday, hitting $33.97. The stock had a trading volume of 739,143 shares. Big Lots has a 52 week low of $26.69 and a 52 week high of $39.22. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $35.20 and a 200-day moving average of $35.00. The company has a market cap of $1.981 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.22.
Big Lots (NYSE:BIG) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 30th. The company reported $0.61 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.61. The company had revenue of $1.30 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.32 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.68 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.3% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts expect that Big Lots will post $2.95 EPS for the current fiscal year.
Big Lots, Inc, through its wholly owned subsidiaries, is a North America’s closeout retailer. At January 28, 2012, the Company operated a total of 1,533 stores in two countries: the United States and Canada.
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