Liberty Tax, Inc. (NASDAQ:TAX) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a note issued to investors on Friday.

According to Zacks, “Liberty Tax, Inc. provides tax preparation services. Its principal operations are conducted through its subsidiary, JTH Tax, Inc. The company engages through its subsidiaries as a franchisor and operator of a system of income tax preparation. It facilitates its customer refund-based tax settlement financial products, such as refund anticipation loans, electronic refund checks, and personal income tax refund discounting. The company also offers online tax preparation services and finance to franchisees for the purchase of franchises, clusters of territories, company?owned stores and for working capital and equipment needs. Liberty Tax Inc., formerly known as JTH Holding, Inc., is headquartered in Virginia Beach, Virginia. “

Separately, ValuEngine cut Liberty Tax from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 2nd.

Shares of Liberty Tax (NASDAQ TAX) opened at 13.825 on Friday. The stock has a market capitalization of $191.92 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.786 and a beta of 0.92. Liberty Tax has a 1-year low of $10.88 and a 1-year high of $16.20. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $13.87 and its 200-day moving average is $14.00.

Liberty Tax (NASDAQ:TAX) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, June 14th. The business services provider reported $2.23 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.42 by $0.19. Liberty Tax had a return on equity of 15.27% and a net margin of 7.25%. The company had revenue of $111.20 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $113.50 million. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $2.32 EPS. Liberty Tax’s quarterly revenue was up 6.5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that Liberty Tax will post $1.25 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

ILLEGAL ACTIVITY NOTICE: This report was originally reported by American Banking News and is owned by of American Banking News. If you are reading this report on another website, it was stolen and reposted in violation of U.S. & international copyright and trademark legislation. The correct version of this report can be accessed at https://www.americanbankingnews.com/2017/09/08/liberty-tax-inc-tax-downgraded-by-zacks-investment-research.html.

In other news, insider Michael Piper sold 13,750 shares of Liberty Tax stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $12.93, for a total transaction of $177,787.50. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 4,300 shares in the company, valued at approximately $55,599. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Ellen M. Mcdowell sold 5,000 shares of Liberty Tax stock in a transaction dated Monday, July 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $13.58, for a total value of $67,900.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 42,579 shares in the company, valued at approximately $578,222.82. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 78,983 shares of company stock worth $993,023 in the last quarter. 40.40% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Citigroup Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Liberty Tax by 6.6% during the 2nd quarter. Citigroup Inc. now owns 8,654 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $112,000 after purchasing an additional 535 shares in the last quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Liberty Tax by 4.4% during the 1st quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 18,876 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $269,000 after purchasing an additional 795 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Liberty Tax by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 224,956 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $2,913,000 after purchasing an additional 1,131 shares in the last quarter. Seizert Capital Partners LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Liberty Tax by 5.2% during the 2nd quarter. Seizert Capital Partners LLC now owns 33,321 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $432,000 after purchasing an additional 1,637 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Northern Trust Corp lifted its holdings in shares of Liberty Tax by 4.1% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 83,181 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $1,077,000 after purchasing an additional 3,282 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 45.95% of the company’s stock.

About Liberty Tax

Liberty Tax, Inc is the holding company for JTH Tax, Inc The Company is a provider of tax preparation services. The Company provides retail federal and state income tax preparation services and related tax settlement products in the United States and Canada. The Company’s tax preparation services and related tax settlement products are offered primarily through franchised locations.

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on Liberty Tax (TAX)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Receive News & Ratings for Liberty Tax Inc. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Liberty Tax Inc. and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.