American Public Education, Inc. (NASDAQ:APEI) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “The affordability of the American Public's courses and programs will benefit the company in the long run owing to high price sensitivity among students. The company has taken up several initiatives to boost its top line. It will continue to improve enrollment trends by strengthening its brand, adding new programs and expanding its strategic relationships. However, American Public's sales and enrollment trends are being hurt by persistent volatility and softness in enrollment by students using Federal aid and military tuition assistance. Shares of the company have also underperformed the industry year to date. Moreover, the company’s second-quarter outlook is discouraging.”

Several other research firms have also recently weighed in on APEI. BidaskClub cut American Public Education from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 2nd. ValuEngine cut American Public Education from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 3rd. Finally, BMO Capital Markets restated a “hold” rating and set a $19.00 target price on shares of American Public Education in a research note on Friday, August 11th.

American Public Education (NASDAQ:APEI) traded down 0.95% during trading on Wednesday, hitting $20.85. 14,710 shares of the stock traded hands. American Public Education has a 12 month low of $14.75 and a 12 month high of $27.20. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $19.30 and its 200 day moving average price is $21.60. The company has a market cap of $338.79 million, a P/E ratio of 21.95 and a beta of 1.12.

American Public Education (NASDAQ:APEI) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, August 8th. The company reported $0.23 earnings per share for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $0.23. The firm had revenue of $72.20 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $70.40 million. American Public Education had a return on equity of 7.87% and a net margin of 5.18%. The firm’s revenue was down 5.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.41 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that American Public Education will post $1.02 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio lifted its stake in American Public Education by 16.2% during the first quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 6,524 shares of the company’s stock worth $149,000 after purchasing an additional 910 shares during the last quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA lifted its stake in American Public Education by 38.9% during the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 6,601 shares of the company’s stock worth $156,000 after purchasing an additional 1,850 shares during the last quarter. Arizona State Retirement System purchased a new stake in American Public Education during the second quarter worth approximately $201,000. Brandywine Global Investment Management LLC purchased a new stake in American Public Education during the second quarter worth approximately $209,000. Finally, Voya Investment Management LLC purchased a new stake in American Public Education during the second quarter worth approximately $221,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 92.02% of the company’s stock.

American Public Education Company Profile

American Public Education, Inc provides online and on-campus postsecondary education. The Company provides postsecondary education through its subsidiary institutions, American Public University System, Inc (APUS) and Hondros College of Nursing (HCON). It operates through two segments: American Public Education Segment, which consists of the operational activities of APUS, other corporate activities, and minority investments, and Hondros College of Nursing Segment, which consists of the operational activities of HCON.

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