J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding Company (NYSE:JCP) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Monday.

According to Zacks, “J. C. Penney shares, which have underperformed the industry in the past six months, recently took a sharp U turn after the company informed that the sales performance has improved in the second quarter of fiscal 2017. Moreover, the company whose top line has missed the estimate in the trailing five quarters announced that it expects to post substantial improvement in sales in the second quarter in comparison with the first quarter. Further, in an effort to lure more customers and ramp up sales, management has introduced new loyalty program. These along with remodeling, renovation and refurbishment of stores with special attention on enhancing the reach of national and especially private-label brands looks promising. J. C. Penney is also gradually increasing the count of Sephora stores. However, the impact of challenging retail landscape, high debt level, stiff competition from online retailers, and waning store traffic concerns linger.”

Other analysts also recently issued reports about the stock. Gordon Haskett began coverage on shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding in a report on Tuesday, May 9th. They issued a “reduce” rating and a $5.00 price target for the company. BidaskClub raised shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 1st. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $5.00 price target on shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding in a report on Thursday. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “sell” rating and issued a $5.00 price target on shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding in a report on Friday, June 16th. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, June 2nd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seventeen have given a hold rating, five have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $6.43.

Shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding (NYSE:JCP) traded down 0.92% during trading on Monday, reaching $5.39. 22,259,829 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The company has a 50 day moving average of $4.88 and a 200 day moving average of $5.62. The firm’s market capitalization is $1.67 billion. J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding has a 52-week low of $4.17 and a 52-week high of $11.30.

J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding (NYSE:JCP) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Friday, May 12th. The department store operator reported $0.06 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.21) by $0.27. The business had revenue of $2.71 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.78 billion. J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding had a negative net margin of 0.89% and a positive return on equity of 11.44%. J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding’s quarterly revenue was down 3.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned ($0.22) EPS. Equities analysts anticipate that J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding will post $0.49 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding by 11,522.1% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 24,704,238 shares of the department store operator’s stock valued at $152,179,000 after buying an additional 24,491,676 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding by 5.6% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 23,858,033 shares of the department store operator’s stock valued at $146,966,000 after buying an additional 1,270,459 shares during the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC boosted its stake in J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding by 45.7% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 14,525,136 shares of the department store operator’s stock valued at $89,475,000 after buying an additional 4,557,694 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp boosted its stake in J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding by 3.5% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 8,815,718 shares of the department store operator’s stock valued at $54,307,000 after buying an additional 294,841 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Hodges Capital Management Inc. boosted its stake in J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding by 33.1% in the first quarter. Hodges Capital Management Inc. now owns 8,414,420 shares of the department store operator’s stock valued at $51,833,000 after buying an additional 2,094,485 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 77.17% of the company’s stock.

About J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding

J. C. Penney Company, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s business consists of selling merchandise and services to consumers through its department stores and its Website at jcpenney.com. Its department stores and Website generally serve the same type of customers, its Website offers virtually the same mix of merchandise as its store assortment and other categories, and its department stores generally accept returns from sales made in stores and through its Website.

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Analyst Recommendations for J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding (NYSE:JCP)

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