Gap, Inc. (The) (NYSE:GPS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Gap’s shares have outpaced the industry so far this year, driven by its solid focus on enhancing product quality and responsiveness to changing consumer trends. Evidently, the company has been making constant efforts to boost its digital and mobile offerings, alongside improving product acceptance. Further, the company’s new growth strategy focused on growing its Old Navy and Athleta brands looks promising. The company expects to open 270 new Old Navy and Athleta stores, while closing 200 Gap and Banana Republic stores. Additionally, Gap’s second-quarter fiscal 2017 marked its second straight earnings beat, and sales topped estimates for the fifth consecutive quarter. The company’s growth efforts and a solid first half encouraged management to raise fiscal 2017 earnings view. However, currency woes are likely to persist in fiscal 2017. It also expects high SG&A expenses in third quarter to impede results.”

Several other brokerages have also weighed in on GPS. Barclays PLC initiated coverage on shares of Gap, Inc. (The) in a research report on Tuesday, September 19th. They set an “overweight” rating and a $32.00 target price on the stock. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. set a $28.00 target price on shares of Gap, Inc. (The) and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 17th. Jefferies Group LLC set a $35.00 target price on shares of Gap, Inc. (The) and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 16th. BMO Capital Markets set a $23.00 target price on shares of Gap, Inc. (The) and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 6th. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG upped their target price on shares of Gap, Inc. (The) from $23.00 to $24.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, August 18th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-one have assigned a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $26.79.

Gap, Inc. (NYSE GPS) traded up 1.82% during midday trading on Monday, hitting $27.45. The stock had a trading volume of 3,553,543 shares. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $27.75 and a 200 day moving average of $24.60. The stock has a market cap of $10.76 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.08 and a beta of 0.88. Gap, Inc. has a 12 month low of $21.02 and a 12 month high of $30.74.

Gap, Inc. (The) (NYSE:GPS) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 17th. The apparel retailer reported $0.58 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.52 by $0.06. Gap, Inc. (The) had a net margin of 5.42% and a return on equity of 28.50%. The business had revenue of $3.80 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.77 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.60 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was down 1.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that Gap, Inc. will post $2.06 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other news, CEO Sonia Syngal sold 1,935 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.79, for a total value of $49,903.65. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 39,656 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,022,728.24. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, CEO Jeff Kirwan sold 1,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $29.38, for a total transaction of $29,380.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 25,268 shares in the company, valued at $742,373.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 676,682 shares of company stock valued at $18,903,910. 27.30% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of GPS. Prudential Financial Inc. lifted its position in shares of Gap, Inc. (The) by 202.2% in the 2nd quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 3,801,842 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $83,603,000 after buying an additional 2,543,850 shares during the last quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. lifted its position in shares of Gap, Inc. (The) by 27.7% in the 3rd quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 4,652,508 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $137,389,000 after buying an additional 1,009,400 shares during the last quarter. NN Investment Partners Holdings N.V. lifted its position in shares of Gap, Inc. (The) by 36.6% in the 2nd quarter. NN Investment Partners Holdings N.V. now owns 2,605,366 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $57,291,000 after buying an additional 697,881 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its position in shares of Gap, Inc. (The) by 2.8% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 23,743,881 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $522,127,000 after buying an additional 643,396 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its position in shares of Gap, Inc. (The) by 22.2% in the 2nd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 3,004,102 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $66,067,000 after buying an additional 545,463 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 56.16% of the company’s stock.

About Gap, Inc. (The)

The Gap, Inc (Gap Inc) is an apparel retail company. The Company offers apparel, accessories and personal care products for men, women and children under the Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Athleta and Intermix brands. Its products are available to customers online through Company-owned Websites and through the use of third-parties that provide logistics and fulfillment services.

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