KBR, Inc. (NYSE:KBR) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Monday.

According to Zacks, “KBR’s Government Services business has proven to be its strongest profit churner in recent times. Also, the company remains confident that recent acquisitions will continue to accelerate growth momentum of this business. Also, KBR’s recent acquisitions namely, Wyle and HTSI, is expected to fortify its government services business. Moreover, greater proportion of reimbursable service annuity-type contracts in the backlog signals margin expansion. However, on the flip side, over the past six months, KBR’s shares have yielded a negative return, wider than the decline recorded by the Zacks categorized Engineering/R&D Services industry. The company has a choppy earnings surprise history, beating estimates twice for as many misses over the trailing four quarters.  Prolonged softness in the Engineering & Construction sector, coupled with volatility in oil and gas prices, may pose a threat to KBR's growth.”

A number of other brokerages also recently weighed in on KBR. BidaskClub raised shares of KBR from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, June 10th. Vertical Research raised shares of KBR from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, May 1st. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $17.83.

KBR (KBR) traded up 0.66% during midday trading on Monday, hitting $15.31. 384,674 shares of the stock traded hands. The stock’s market cap is $2.19 billion. The company has a 50-day moving average of $14.72 and a 200-day moving average of $15.55. KBR has a 1-year low of $13.16 and a 1-year high of $17.95.

KBR (NYSE:KBR) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, April 28th. The construction company reported $0.28 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.28. KBR had a negative net margin of 1.51% and a positive return on equity of 4.79%. The firm had revenue of $1.11 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.12 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.30 EPS. The business’s revenue was up 11.0% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts expect that KBR will post $1.31 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. 1060 Capital LLC purchased a new stake in shares of KBR during the first quarter worth about $19,915,000. State Treasurer State of Michigan boosted its stake in shares of KBR by 1.2% in the first quarter. State Treasurer State of Michigan now owns 58,042 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $872,000 after buying an additional 700 shares during the period. BlueCrest Capital Management Ltd purchased a new stake in shares of KBR during the first quarter worth about $267,000. Macquarie Group Ltd. boosted its stake in shares of KBR by 0.3% in the fourth quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 316,300 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $5,279,000 after buying an additional 950 shares during the period. Finally, Louisiana State Employees Retirement System boosted its stake in shares of KBR by 2.3% in the first quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 36,100 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $543,000 after buying an additional 800 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 99.75% of the company’s stock.

About KBR

KBR, Inc is a provider of professional services and technologies across the asset and program life-cycle within the government services and hydrocarbons industries. The Company operates through business segments, including Technology & Consulting (T&C), Engineering & Construction (E&C), Government Services (GS), Non-strategic Business and Other.

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