Meredith Corp. (MDP) Raised to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research
Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Wednesday.
According to Zacks, “Meredith continued with its positive earnings surprise streak for the eleventh straight quarter when it posted fourth-quarter fiscal 2016 results. Favorable advertising trends in the digital section and recent acquisitions continue to positively influence the company’s performance. Digital traffic increased to more than 80 million monthly unique visitors. The company expects strong political advertising cycle as well as higher retransmission revenues and robust digital advertising revenue growth to drive its performance higher in fiscal 2017. Meredith is focused on bolstering advertising revenues, primarily in the digital space, and is increasingly concentrating on brand licensing, marketing services and eCommerce. However, with advancing technology, the print media is on a decline. Shift to online is likely to put enormous pressure on Meredith’s magazine portfolio.”
Separately, Benchmark Co. boosted their price target on shares of Meredith Corp. from $57.00 to $62.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, July 29th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Meredith Corp. currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $54.20.
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Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) traded down 0.58% during trading on Wednesday, reaching $49.91. 240,166 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Meredith Corp. has a 12 month low of $35.03 and a 12 month high of $57.53. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $51.92 and its 200-day moving average is $51.33. The company has a market capitalization of $2.22 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 66.55 and a beta of 1.01.
Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $1.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.03 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $435.78 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $437.78 million. Meredith Corp. had a net margin of 2.06% and a return on equity of 15.66%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.94 EPS. Analysts expect that Meredith Corp. will post $3.68 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 15th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, August 31st were paid a $0.495 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Monday, August 29th. This represents a $1.98 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.97%. Meredith Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 275.00%.
In other news, Chairman Stephen M. Lacy sold 46,283 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.15, for a total value of $2,506,224.45. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, CFO Joseph H. Ceryanec sold 9,145 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.03, for a total transaction of $494,104.35. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 11.24% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of MDP. BlackRock Fund Advisors increased its position in shares of Meredith Corp. by 1.4% in the second quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 5,286,511 shares of the company’s stock valued at $274,423,000 after buying an additional 70,526 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Meredith Corp. by 4.6% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 2,810,810 shares of the company’s stock valued at $145,909,000 after buying an additional 124,448 shares during the period. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC increased its position in shares of Meredith Corp. by 245.2% in the second quarter. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC now owns 2,157,605 shares of the company’s stock valued at $112,002,000 after buying an additional 1,532,611 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its position in shares of Meredith Corp. by 16.1% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,967,824 shares of the company’s stock valued at $102,148,000 after buying an additional 272,663 shares during the period. Finally, State Street Corp increased its position in shares of Meredith Corp. by 0.9% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 1,177,881 shares of the company’s stock valued at $61,143,000 after buying an additional 10,500 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 82.32% of the company’s stock.
Meredith Corp. Company Profile
Meredith Corporation is a media and marketing company. The Company operates two business segments namely local media and national media. Its national media segment includes national consumer media brands delivered via multiple media platforms including print magazines and digital and mobile media, brand licensing activities, database-related activities and business-to-business marketing products and services.
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