NetEase (NASDAQ:NTES) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “NetEase, Inc. is an Internet technology company engaged in the development of applications, services and other technologies for the Internet in China. It provides online gaming services that include in-house developed massively multi-player online role-playing games and licensed titles. NetEase also provides online advertising, community services, entertainment content, free e-mail services and micro-blogging services. The Company also offers wireless value-added services such as news and information content, matchmaking services, music and photos from the web that are sent over SMS, MMS, WAP, IVR and Color Ring-back Tone technologies. NetEase, Inc., formerly known as NetEase.com, Inc., is based in Beijing, the People’s Republic of China. “

Several other research firms also recently issued reports on NTES. Vetr upgraded NetEase from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $320.50 price target for the company in a research note on Wednesday, September 20th. Jefferies Group downgraded NetEase from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and decreased their price target for the stock from $330.00 to $290.00 in a research note on Tuesday, October 3rd. Credit Suisse Group reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $315.00 price target on shares of NetEase in a research note on Tuesday, October 3rd. Barclays assumed coverage on NetEase in a research note on Wednesday, October 4th. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $260.00 price target for the company. Finally, Deutsche Bank set a $325.00 price target on NetEase and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, October 6th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating, seven have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $339.89.

NetEase (NASDAQ:NTES) opened at $322.08 on Wednesday. NetEase has a 52 week low of $233.50 and a 52 week high of $377.64. The company has a market capitalization of $42,550.00, a PE ratio of 20.98, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.58 and a beta of 0.94.

NetEase (NASDAQ:NTES) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, November 15th. The technology company reported $2.86 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.66 by $0.20. NetEase had a return on equity of 31.84% and a net margin of 25.34%. sell-side analysts forecast that NetEase will post 12.85 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

NetEase announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock repurchase plan on Wednesday, November 15th that allows the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the technology company to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are generally an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

Large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. TT International bought a new stake in NetEase during the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $17,715,000. Stifel Financial Corp boosted its stake in NetEase by 25.9% during the 2nd quarter. Stifel Financial Corp now owns 3,032 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $919,000 after purchasing an additional 624 shares during the period. First Trust Advisors LP boosted its stake in NetEase by 9.5% during the 3rd quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 319,517 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $84,292,000 after purchasing an additional 27,771 shares during the period. AXA boosted its stake in NetEase by 5.9% during the 3rd quarter. AXA now owns 32,431 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $8,555,000 after purchasing an additional 1,820 shares during the period. Finally, Fox Run Management L.L.C. boosted its stake in NetEase by 228.6% during the 3rd quarter. Fox Run Management L.L.C. now owns 2,300 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $607,000 after purchasing an additional 1,600 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 50.34% of the company’s stock.

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About NetEase

NetEase, Inc (NetEase) is a technology company. The Company operates an interactive online community in China and is a provider of Chinese language content and services through its online games, Internet media, e-mail, e-commerce and other businesses. The Company operates through three segments: Online Game Services; Advertising Services, and E-mail, E-commerce and Others.

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