Enersys (NYSE:ENS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “EnerSys’ shares have yielded a negative return over the past six months, comparing unfavorably to the industry’s average positive return. Volatility in the cost of commodities (particularly lead) has weighed upon the company’s profitability in recent times. To combat the lead price rise, EnerSys has already initiated price increases but its taking much longer than expected for the results to show. In addition, currency fluctuations and stiff competition in the industry are also eroding the company’s profits. EnerSys is in the midst of a transformation, wherein it has been undertaking multiple long-term investments to boost growth. However, these efforts are impacting the company’s gross profit percentage adversely in the near-term. Despite these negatives, EnerSys’ dominant position in the lead-acid battery market, diligent cost reduction efforts and financial health add to its strength.”

A number of other equities analysts also recently weighed in on the company. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $77.00 target price (down previously from $82.00) on shares of Enersys in a report on Wednesday. ValuEngine downgraded Enersys from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, August 26th. BidaskClub downgraded Enersys from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Friday, August 18th. Finally, Sidoti upgraded Enersys from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $83.00 target price on the stock in a report on Thursday, August 17th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, one has given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. Enersys presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $80.00.

Enersys (NYSE:ENS) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, August 9th. The industrial products company reported $1.12 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.13 by ($0.01). The business had revenue of $622.60 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $615.77 million. Enersys had a net margin of 6.86% and a return on equity of 18.90%. Enersys’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.14 EPS.

Enersys declared that its board has approved a share repurchase program on Wednesday, August 9th that permits the company to repurchase $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the industrial products company to buy up to 3.2% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are usually a sign that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

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A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in ENS. OppenheimerFunds Inc. increased its holdings in Enersys by 35.7% in the first quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 8,704 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $687,000 after buying an additional 2,290 shares during the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP increased its holdings in Enersys by 37.5% in the first quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 38,736 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $3,058,000 after buying an additional 10,574 shares during the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC increased its holdings in Enersys by 1.5% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 312,152 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $24,641,000 after buying an additional 4,615 shares during the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc increased its holdings in Enersys by 15.8% in the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 42,015 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $3,316,000 after buying an additional 5,737 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. increased its holdings in Enersys by 9.4% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 3,710,902 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $292,939,000 after buying an additional 318,032 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 93.35% of the company’s stock.

About Enersys

EnerSys is a manufacturer, marketer and distributor of industrial batteries. The Company manufactures, markets and distributes related products, such as chargers, power equipment, outdoor cabinet enclosures and battery accessories, and provides related after-market and customer-support services for industrial batteries.

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