ePlus inc. (NASDAQ:PLUS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Friday.

According to Zacks, “ePlus Inc. serves as the parent holding company for ePlus Group, Inc., ePlus Technology of NC, Inc., ePlus Technology of PA, Inc., ePlus Technology, Inc., ePlus Government, Inc., ePlus Capital, Inc., ePlus Systems, Inc., ePlus Content Services, Inc and MLC Leasing, S.A. de C.V. “

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently weighed in on the company. ValuEngine cut ePlus inc. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, May 26th. Stifel Nicolaus restated a “hold” rating and set a $75.00 price objective on shares of ePlus inc. in a research note on Thursday, August 3rd. Finally, BidaskClub cut ePlus inc. from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 9th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company. ePlus inc. presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $44.80.

Shares of ePlus inc. (NASDAQ:PLUS) opened at 81.60 on Friday. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $79.68 and a 200-day moving average price of $90.95. ePlus inc. has a 52 week low of $63.76 and a 52 week high of $141.00. The stock has a market cap of $1.16 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.40 and a beta of 1.41.

ePlus inc. announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase program on Friday, August 18th that authorizes the company to buyback 500,000 shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the software maker to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are generally a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

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In related news, Director John E. Callies sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $83.15, for a total transaction of $83,150.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Eric D. Hovde sold 35,774 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.60, for a total value of $2,811,836.40. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 74,163 shares in the company, valued at $5,829,211.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 71,317 shares of company stock valued at $5,665,433 over the last 90 days. 3.25% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in PLUS. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in shares of ePlus inc. by 84,983.9% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 792,982 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $107,092,000 after buying an additional 792,050 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC raised its position in shares of ePlus inc. by 171.3% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 959,478 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $71,097,000 after buying an additional 605,842 shares in the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position in shares of ePlus inc. by 96.5% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,173,675 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $86,970,000 after buying an additional 576,536 shares in the last quarter. Fiduciary Management Inc. WI raised its position in shares of ePlus inc. by 102.6% in the second quarter. Fiduciary Management Inc. WI now owns 1,063,046 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $78,772,000 after buying an additional 538,286 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of ePlus inc. by 101.5% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 919,169 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $68,110,000 after buying an additional 462,907 shares in the last quarter. 51.93% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About ePlus inc.

ePlus inc. is a holding company. The Company is engaged in the business of selling, leasing, financing and managing information technology. It operates through two segments: technology and financing. The technology segment sells information technology (IT) hardware products, third-party software and maintenance contracts, its own and third-party professional and managed services, and its software.

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