Lennar (LEN) Rating Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research
Lennar (NYSE:LEN) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Monday.
According to Zacks, “Lennar missed expectations on earnings in the final quarter of fiscal 2017 after surpassing the same for seven times in a row. Lennar’s adjusted earnings of $1.29 per share in the quarter fell shy of the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 14% and decreased 1.5% from the year-ago level of $1.31. The downside was primarily due to the strategic shift of a transaction to the first quarter of fiscal 2018. Nonetheless, its total revenues of $3.79 billion beat the consensus estimate by 4.5% and increased 12% year over year, as the homebuilding, financial services and multi-family segments performed significantly well. Lennar witnessed robust market improvement, which was supported by 11% year-over-year increase in its new home orders (18% in dollars), which was above management's 7-10% target. However, rising land and labor costs pose a threat to the company’s margins. Gross margin contracted 90 bps due to higher land and construction costs per home.”
A number of other research analysts have also weighed in on LEN. Mizuho lowered Lennar from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and reduced their price objective for the company from $59.00 to $53.00 in a research report on Tuesday, September 19th. Royal Bank of Canada reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $64.00 price objective on shares of Lennar in a research report on Monday, September 25th. KeyCorp reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Lennar in a research report on Tuesday, September 26th. MKM Partners raised Lennar from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $64.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. Finally, Citigroup reissued a “neutral” rating and issued a $59.00 target price (up previously from $57.00) on shares of Lennar in a report on Wednesday, October 4th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $62.53.
Lennar (NYSE:LEN) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 10th. The construction company reported $1.29 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.50 by ($0.21). Lennar had a net margin of 6.41% and a return on equity of 12.22%. The company had revenue of $3.79 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.59 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $1.34 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 12.1% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts forecast that Lennar will post 5.02 earnings per share for the current year.
In other news, COO Jonathan M. Jaffe sold 20,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, January 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.02, for a total value of $1,280,400.00. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 99,000 shares in the company, valued at approximately $6,337,980. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, CFO Bruce E. Gross sold 5,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $60.00, for a total value of $300,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 371,043 shares in the company, valued at $22,262,580. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 12.18% of the company’s stock.
Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in LEN. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company boosted its stake in shares of Lennar by 5.4% in the 2nd quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 7,516,323 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $400,771,000 after buying an additional 386,110 shares during the last quarter. Capital Growth Management LP boosted its stake in shares of Lennar by 28.2% in the 3rd quarter. Capital Growth Management LP now owns 1,090,000 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $57,552,000 after buying an additional 240,000 shares during the last quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC boosted its stake in shares of Lennar by 268.3% in the 3rd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 162,638 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $8,587,000 after buying an additional 118,482 shares during the last quarter. Stevens Capital Management LP boosted its stake in shares of Lennar by 374.1% in the 2nd quarter. Stevens Capital Management LP now owns 114,099 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $6,084,000 after buying an additional 90,035 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Patriot Wealth Management Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Lennar in the 4th quarter worth $5,563,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 81.25% of the company’s stock.
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Lennar Corporation is a provider of real estate related financial services, commercial real estate, investment management and finance company. The Company is a homebuilder that operates in various states. Its segments include Homebuilding East, Homebuilding Central, Homebuilding West, Lennar Financial Services, Rialto and Lennar Multifamily.
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