Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company (HPE) Rating Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research
Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company (NYSE:HPE) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Wednesday.
According to Zacks, “Estimates have remained unchanged ahead of Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s Q4 earnings release. The company has a mixed record of earnings surprises in recent quarters. During the Q3 earnings conference call, the company had provided a disappointing guidance for Q4 which undermines its near-term prospects. It hinted that competitive pricing, heightened commodities pricing pressure and some dilution from M&A will dent the bottom-line performance. Nonetheless, we are encouraged by the company’s massive restructuring initiatives. On one hand, it is offloading low-margin business such as Software, which, in our opinion, will improvise the company’s margins over the long run. And on the other hand, it is enhancing its capabilities in the hybrid IT model as evident from the recent agreements to acquire SimpliVity and Cloud Cruiser. We believe the company’s focus on hybrid IT model will drive growth over the long run.”
Other equities research analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. Maxim Group reissued a “hold” rating and set a $14.00 price objective (down previously from $18.00) on shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. Wells Fargo & Company initiated coverage on shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise in a research report on Tuesday. They set a “market perform” rating and a $15.00 price objective for the company. Royal Bank Of Canada decreased their target price on shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise from $20.00 to $15.00 and set a “sector perform” rating for the company in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “market perform” rating and issued a $15.00 target price (down previously from $18.00) on shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. Finally, UBS AG reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $16.00 target price (down previously from $21.00) on shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-two have issued a hold rating, eleven have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $17.49.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise (NYSE:HPE) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, September 5th. The technology company reported $0.30 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.26 by $0.04. Hewlett Packard Enterprise had a net margin of 0.29% and a return on equity of 9.04%. The company had revenue of $8.21 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $7.49 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.49 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 2.5% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts predict that Hewlett Packard Enterprise will post 1.38 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise declared that its board has approved a stock repurchase plan on Wednesday, October 18th that permits the company to repurchase $5.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the technology company to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
In related news, CEO Margaret C. Whitman sold 249,052 shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $13.14, for a total transaction of $3,272,543.28. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 892,118 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $11,722,430.52. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, EVP Henry Gomez sold 494,360 shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, September 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $14.87, for a total transaction of $7,351,133.20. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 494,360 shares in the company, valued at $7,351,133.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 2,920,273 shares of company stock worth $41,288,784. Insiders own 0.87% of the company’s stock.
A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of HPE. Dodge & Cox acquired a new stake in Hewlett Packard Enterprise during the 4th quarter worth approximately $4,831,636,000. BlackRock Inc. lifted its position in shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise by 2,713.7% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 99,450,412 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $2,356,975,000 after acquiring an additional 95,915,907 shares during the period. AQR Capital Management LLC lifted its position in shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise by 527.0% during the 4th quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 25,007,739 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $578,679,000 after acquiring an additional 21,019,389 shares during the period. Hotchkis & Wiley Capital Management LLC lifted its position in shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise by 94.0% during the 4th quarter. Hotchkis & Wiley Capital Management LLC now owns 37,399,100 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $865,415,000 after acquiring an additional 18,117,846 shares during the period. Finally, Norges Bank acquired a new position in shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise during the 4th quarter valued at $372,714,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 81.96% of the company’s stock.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company Profile
Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company is a provider of technology solutions. The Company’s segments include: Enterprise Group, Software, Financial Services and Corporate Investments. The Enterprise Group segment provides its customers with the technology infrastructure they need to optimize traditional information technology (IT).
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