Palo Alto Networks, Inc. (PANW) Rating Increased to Buy at Zacks Investment Research
Palo Alto Networks, Inc. (NYSE:PANW) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Tuesday. The firm presently has a $164.00 price target on the network technology company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target suggests a potential upside of 12.01% from the company’s previous close.
According to Zacks, “Palo Alto allows firms, service providers and government bodies to impose tighter security measures through its network security platform. Revenue growth seems to be steady, aided by strength across all its geographical regions and business segments. Also, customer wins coupled with expansion of the existing customer base are the other positives. We believe that the company’s product refreshes and acquisitions synergies will boost revenues, going forward. Also, the strategic partnerships with the likes of VMware, Splunk and Citrix, will continue to bring in customers for Palo Alto thereby boosting the top line. Notably, the stock has outperformed the industry over the last six months. Nonethess, a volatile spending environment and competition from Cisco Systems and Check Point Software Technologies remain concerns.”
Several other analysts have also recently commented on PANW. Evercore ISI set a $140.00 target price on Palo Alto Networks and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, June 17th. TheStreet upgraded Palo Alto Networks from a “d+” rating to a “c-” rating in a report on Friday, June 16th. ValuEngine upgraded Palo Alto Networks from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, June 27th. Vetr upgraded Palo Alto Networks from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $140.90 target price on the stock in a report on Tuesday, June 27th. Finally, Northland Securities initiated coverage on Palo Alto Networks in a report on Thursday, June 29th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $175.00 target price on the stock. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and thirty-one have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $160.33.
Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 31st. The network technology company reported ($0.13) earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.79 by ($0.92). The firm had revenue of $509.00 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $487.53 million. Palo Alto Networks had a negative return on equity of 19.72% and a negative net margin of 12.57%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 27.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.50 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts expect that Palo Alto Networks will post $3.33 EPS for the current year.
In other news, insider Nir Zuk sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, September 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $145.01, for a total transaction of $290,020.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Carl M. Eschenbach sold 1,572 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $144.99, for a total value of $227,924.28. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 3,619 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $524,718.81. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 50,001 shares of company stock valued at $7,165,254 over the last three months. 4.80% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Bangor Savings Bank purchased a new stake in shares of Palo Alto Networks during the 2nd quarter valued at $1,342,000. Cypress Wealth Advisors LLC increased its position in shares of Palo Alto Networks by 3.7% during the 2nd quarter. Cypress Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 3,154 shares of the network technology company’s stock valued at $422,000 after purchasing an additional 113 shares during the last quarter. National Asset Management Inc. increased its position in shares of Palo Alto Networks by 4.7% during the 2nd quarter. National Asset Management Inc. now owns 2,819 shares of the network technology company’s stock valued at $378,000 after purchasing an additional 127 shares during the last quarter. Grandeur Peak Global Advisors LLC increased its position in shares of Palo Alto Networks by 1.3% during the 2nd quarter. Grandeur Peak Global Advisors LLC now owns 7,975 shares of the network technology company’s stock valued at $1,067,000 after purchasing an additional 100 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Scotia Capital Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Palo Alto Networks during the 2nd quarter valued at $213,000. 77.03% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
About Palo Alto Networks
Palo Alto Networks, Inc offers a next-generation security platform. The Company’s security platform consists of three elements: Next-Generation Firewall, Advanced Endpoint Protection and Threat Intelligence Cloud. Its Next-Generation Firewall delivers application, user and content visibility and control, as well as protection against network-based cyber threats integrated within the firewall through its hardware and software architecture.
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