Grand Canyon Education, Inc. (NASDAQ:LOPE) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Friday. The firm presently has a $100.00 price target on the stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target suggests a potential upside of 12.94% from the stock’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Grand Canyon Education, Inc. is a regionally accredited provider of online postsecondary education services focused on offering graduate and undergraduate degree programs in its core disciplines of education, business, and healthcare. In addition to its online programs, it offers programs at its traditional campus in Phoenix, Arizona and onsite at the facilities of employers. “

A number of other equities research analysts have also weighed in on the stock. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Grand Canyon Education from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, September 1st. BidaskClub lowered shares of Grand Canyon Education from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 19th. BMO Capital Markets restated a “buy” rating and issued a $85.00 price objective on shares of Grand Canyon Education in a report on Monday, September 18th. Piper Jaffray Companies boosted their price objective on shares of Grand Canyon Education from $83.00 to $92.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 11th. Finally, Barrington Research restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $103.00 price objective (up from $98.00) on shares of Grand Canyon Education in a report on Thursday. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company. Grand Canyon Education currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $97.40.

Shares of Grand Canyon Education (LOPE) traded up $2.85 during trading on Friday, reaching $88.54. 338,925 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 283,909. The firm has a market capitalization of $4.28 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.57, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.75 and a beta of 1.34. The company has a quick ratio of 1.33, a current ratio of 1.36 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.07.

Grand Canyon Education (NASDAQ:LOPE) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The company reported $0.81 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.76 by $0.05. Grand Canyon Education had a net margin of 19.32% and a return on equity of 21.40%. The business had revenue of $236.21 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $231.43 million. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.62 earnings per share. Grand Canyon Education’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.2% on a year-over-year basis. analysts expect that Grand Canyon Education will post 3.9 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In related news, COO William Stan Meyer sold 1,315 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.35, for a total transaction of $105,660.25. Following the completion of the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 99,774 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,016,840.90. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider Joseph N. Mildenhall sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.17, for a total transaction of $400,850.00. Following the sale, the insider now owns 88,798 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $7,118,935.66. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 3.00% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Meeder Asset Management Inc. increased its position in Grand Canyon Education by 586.1% during the 2nd quarter. Meeder Asset Management Inc. now owns 1,434 shares of the company’s stock valued at $112,000 after purchasing an additional 1,225 shares during the period. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank increased its position in Grand Canyon Education by 8.2% during the 2nd quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 1,827 shares of the company’s stock valued at $143,000 after purchasing an additional 139 shares during the period. CAPROCK Group Inc. purchased a new position in Grand Canyon Education during the 3rd quarter valued at $225,000. Fox Run Management L.L.C. purchased a new position in Grand Canyon Education during the 2nd quarter valued at $227,000. Finally, Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC purchased a new position in Grand Canyon Education during the 2nd quarter valued at $227,000. 96.78% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Grand Canyon Education

Grand Canyon Education, Inc is engaged in the provision of postsecondary education. The Company is a regionally accredited university. The Company offers the degrees, including Doctor of Education, Doctor of Business Administration, Doctor of Nursing Practice, Doctor of Philosophy, Education Specialist, Master of Divinity, Master of Arts, Master of Education, Master of Business Administration and Master of Public Administration, Master of Public Health, Master of Science, Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, and a range of programs for its degrees.

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