Investment analysts at Citigroup Inc. began coverage on shares of Papa John's Int'l, Inc. (NASDAQ:PZZA) in a research note issued on Monday, MarketBeat.com reports. The firm set a “buy” rating and a $90.00 price target on the stock. Citigroup Inc.’s price target indicates a potential upside of 23.36% from the stock’s previous close.

Several other brokerages have also recently issued reports on PZZA. Zacks Investment Research raised Papa John's Int'l from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $88.00 price objective for the company in a report on Friday, August 18th. Longbow Research reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $95.00 price objective on shares of Papa John's Int'l in a report on Monday, May 22nd. Stephens boosted their price objective on Papa John's Int'l from $90.00 to $95.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 2nd. BTIG Research reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $100.00 price target on shares of Papa John's Int'l in a report on Tuesday, August 29th. Finally, KeyCorp reaffirmed an “equal weight” rating on shares of Papa John's Int'l in a report on Tuesday, June 20th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $89.00.

Papa John's Int'l (NASDAQ:PZZA) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, August 1st. The company reported $0.65 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.64 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $434.78 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $438.51 million. Papa John's Int'l had a return on equity of 1,078.35% and a net margin of 5.75%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.61 EPS.

Papa John's Int'l declared that its board has authorized a share repurchase program on Tuesday, August 1st that allows the company to repurchase $500.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to reacquire up to 198% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are often a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

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In related news, SVP Timothy C. Ohern sold 9,218 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $75.08, for a total value of $692,087.44. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 35,650 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,676,602. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 27.70% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd acquired a new position in Papa John's Int'l in the 2nd quarter worth about $1,254,000. Koch Industries Inc. raised its holdings in Papa John's Int'l by 6,732.0% in the 2nd quarter. Koch Industries Inc. now owns 297,807 shares of the company’s stock worth $294,000 after purchasing an additional 293,448 shares during the period. Verition Fund Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Papa John's Int'l during the second quarter valued at approximately $424,000. Nomura Holdings Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Papa John's Int'l by 30.0% during the second quarter. Nomura Holdings Inc. now owns 7,361 shares of the company’s stock valued at $529,000 after acquiring an additional 1,698 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bank of Nova Scotia acquired a new position in shares of Papa John's Int'l during the second quarter valued at approximately $3,610,000. 83.77% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Papa John's Int'l

Papa John’s International, Inc (Papa John’s) operates and franchises pizza delivery and carryout restaurants and, in certain international markets, dine-in and delivery restaurants under the trademark Papa John’s. The Company operates through five segments: domestic Company-owned restaurants, North America commissaries, North America franchising, international operations and all other business units.

Analyst Recommendations for Papa John's Int'l (NASDAQ:PZZA)

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