Axcelis Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:ACLS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday. The brokerage presently has a $36.00 target price on the semiconductor company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective points to a potential upside of 9.42% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Axcelis Technologies is a leading producer of ion implantation equipment used in the fabrication of semiconductors. The company also produces dry strip, photostabilization and rapid thermal processing equipment, which is used in semiconductor manufacturing primarily before and after the ion implantation process. In addition, the company provides extensive aftermarket service and support, including spare parts, equipment upgrades, maintenance services and customer training. “

A number of other equities analysts also recently weighed in on the company. Benchmark Co. reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $28.00 price target (up previously from $24.00) on shares of Axcelis Technologies in a research report on Friday, September 8th. ValuEngine raised Axcelis Technologies from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, September 1st. BidaskClub downgraded Axcelis Technologies from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Saturday, August 5th. Stifel Nicolaus upped their price target on Axcelis Technologies from $20.00 to $31.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday. Finally, B. Riley reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $30.00 price target on shares of Axcelis Technologies in a research report on Friday, August 4th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Axcelis Technologies presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $29.83.

Axcelis Technologies (NASDAQ:ACLS) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The semiconductor company reported $0.33 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.34 by ($0.01). Axcelis Technologies had a return on equity of 12.52% and a net margin of 9.10%. The firm had revenue of $102.80 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $100.07 million. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.10 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 59.4% compared to the same quarter last year.

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In other news, EVP William J. Bintz sold 12,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, September 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $22.57, for a total transaction of $282,125.00. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, CFO Kevin J. Brewer sold 17,339 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $20.75, for a total value of $359,784.25. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders have sold 106,641 shares of company stock worth $2,347,514. Company insiders own 5.66% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Peregrine Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Axcelis Technologies by 405.6% during the 2nd quarter. Peregrine Capital Management LLC now owns 572,856 shares of the semiconductor company’s stock worth $12,001,000 after purchasing an additional 459,560 shares in the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. raised its stake in shares of Axcelis Technologies by 247.3% during the 2nd quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 161,665 shares of the semiconductor company’s stock worth $3,386,000 after purchasing an additional 115,111 shares in the last quarter. Swiss National Bank bought a new stake in shares of Axcelis Technologies during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $1,029,000. Virtu KCG Holdings LLC bought a new stake in shares of Axcelis Technologies during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $672,000. Finally, KBC Group NV raised its stake in shares of Axcelis Technologies by 138.0% during the 2nd quarter. KBC Group NV now owns 77,218 shares of the semiconductor company’s stock worth $1,618,000 after purchasing an additional 44,775 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 74.68% of the company’s stock.

About Axcelis Technologies

Axcelis Technologies, Inc designs, manufactures and services ion implantation and other processing equipment used in the fabrication of semiconductor chips. The Company also provides aftermarket lifecycle products and services, including used tools, spare parts, equipment upgrades, maintenance services and customer training.

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