Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers Incorporated (NYSE:RBA) (TSE:RBA) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers conduct unreserved public auctions every year at locations throughout North and Central America, Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa and the Middle East. The company is known for their innovative auction methods, attention to detail and their total commitment to the unreserved auction. The confidence this gives their customers has enabled Ritchie Bros. to become one of the largest industrial auctioneer in the world. “

A number of other equities analysts have also weighed in on the company. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $26.00 target price (down previously from $29.00) on shares of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers in a research report on Tuesday. TD Securities decreased their target price on Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers from $25.00 to $23.00 and set a “reduce” rating for the company in a research report on Tuesday. Raymond James Financial, Inc. decreased their target price on Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers from $29.50 to $29.00 and set a “market perform” rating for the company in a research report on Tuesday. Robert W. Baird reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $33.00 target price on shares of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers in a research report on Tuesday, September 12th. Finally, Scotiabank set a $34.00 target price on Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 12th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $30.67.

Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (NYSE RBA) opened at 27.81 on Wednesday. Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers has a 52-week low of $26.68 and a 52-week high of $39.96. The company has a market cap of $2.98 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 60.59 and a beta of 0.57. The company’s 50-day moving average is $29.98 and its 200 day moving average is $30.08.

Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (NYSE:RBA) (TSE:RBA) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, August 8th. The business services provider reported $0.33 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.32 by $0.01. Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers had a return on equity of 14.72% and a net margin of 8.96%. The business had revenue of $166.20 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $161.85 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.37 EPS. Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers’s revenue was up 4.7% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts forecast that Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers will post $0.85 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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In other Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers news, CFO Sharon Ruth Driscoll purchased 1,375 shares of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 7th. The stock was purchased at an average price of $29.77 per share, with a total value of $40,933.75. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 1,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $29,770. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. 0.39% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in RBA. Comerica Bank increased its position in shares of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers by 0.7% during the 1st quarter. Comerica Bank now owns 6,737 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $221,000 after purchasing an additional 44 shares during the last quarter. Sei Investments Co. increased its position in shares of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers by 5,660.4% during the 1st quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 32,604 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $1,073,000 after purchasing an additional 32,038 shares during the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its position in shares of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers by 16.2% during the 1st quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 53,066 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $1,746,000 after purchasing an additional 7,406 shares during the last quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. increased its position in shares of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers by 178.8% during the 1st quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 33,747 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $1,110,000 after purchasing an additional 21,644 shares during the last quarter. Finally, FMR LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers during the 1st quarter valued at about $2,952,000. 96.01% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers

Ritchie Bros Auctioneers Inc is a Canada-based holding company. The Company is an industrial auctioneer and used equipment distributor, selling used equipment and other assets. Its segments include Core Auction, which is a network of auction locations that conduct live, unreserved auctions with both on-site and online bidding, and Other, which includes its EquipmentOne and Mascus International Holding B.V.

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