Big Lots (NYSE:BIG) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Big Lots’ shares have outperformed the industry in the past six months owing to better-than-expected earnings for the eighth straight quarter and encouraging earnings outlook. Meanwhile, both furniture financing programs and soft home have been consistently gaining traction. Following third-quarter fiscal 2017 results, management raised fiscal 2017 earnings guidance but remained somewhat cautious about sales and comparable store sales performance. Sales growth for the full year is predicted to increase by 2%, compared with earlier guided range of 2-2.5%. Moreover, challenging retail landscape, aggressive promotional strategies and waning store traffic might weigh on the performance. Softness in electronics, toys and accessories also remains a concern. Gross margins, which have declined in the second and third quarter is expected to fall further in the final quarter of 2017.”

A number of other equities research analysts also recently weighed in on BIG. Citigroup set a $69.00 target price on Big Lots and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday. Telsey Advisory Group raised their target price on Big Lots from $56.00 to $59.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a report on Monday. Raymond James Financial reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $67.00 target price on shares of Big Lots in a report on Saturday. KeyCorp reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $63.00 target price on shares of Big Lots in a report on Friday. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies set a $52.00 target price on Big Lots and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Sunday, October 1st. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $60.64.

Shares of Big Lots (BIG) traded up $0.72 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $58.93. The company had a trading volume of 1,584,100 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,017,873. The firm has a market capitalization of $2,500.00, a P/E ratio of 14.06, a P/E/G ratio of 1.02 and a beta of 0.99. Big Lots has a 1-year low of $45.10 and a 1-year high of $60.18. The company has a quick ratio of 0.24, a current ratio of 1.66 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.66.

Big Lots (NYSE:BIG) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, December 1st. The company reported $0.06 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.04 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $1.11 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.11 billion. Big Lots had a return on equity of 30.17% and a net margin of 3.36%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up .5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.04 earnings per share. sell-side analysts predict that Big Lots will post 4.24 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In related news, CEO David J. Campisi sold 96,940 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.00, for a total transaction of $5,137,820.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 99,203 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,257,759. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Ronald A. Robins, Jr. sold 1,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, September 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.00, for a total value of $51,000.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 7,925 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $404,175. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 1.70% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in BIG. IFP Advisors Inc raised its position in shares of Big Lots by 13.6% in the 2nd quarter. IFP Advisors Inc now owns 2,334 shares of the company’s stock worth $113,000 after acquiring an additional 280 shares in the last quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale raised its position in shares of Big Lots by 78.3% in the 3rd quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale now owns 2,858 shares of the company’s stock worth $144,000 after acquiring an additional 1,255 shares in the last quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC raised its position in shares of Big Lots by 19.4% in the 2nd quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 3,668 shares of the company’s stock worth $177,000 after acquiring an additional 596 shares in the last quarter. Whittier Trust Co. bought a new position in shares of Big Lots in the 3rd quarter worth about $178,000. Finally, First Quadrant L P CA bought a new position in shares of Big Lots in the 3rd quarter worth about $182,000.

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Big Lots Company Profile

Big Lots, Inc is a non-traditional, discount retailer operating in the United States. As of January 28, 2017, the Company operated a total of 1,432 stores. The Company operates through the discount retailing segment. As of January 28, 2017, the Company’s stores are located at various states of the United States, such as Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Texas, Utah and Washington.

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