Symantec (SYMC) Stock Rating Lowered by Zacks Investment Research

Symantec (NASDAQ:SYMC) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report released on Saturday.

According to Zacks, “Estimates have remained unchanged, of late, ahead of Symantec’s Q3 earnings release. The company has a mixed record of earnings surprises in recent quarters. We remain cautious about this internet-security provider's performance due to faster-than-expected shift in booking mix, which will have long-term benefits but will impede near-term revenue growth. Additionally, we consider that although the sale of its certified authority business will avoid conflicts with Alphabet, the loss of high-margin business might hurt Symantec’s profitability in the near future. Furthermore, changing customer spending behavior makes us pretty skeptical about its performance. Moreover, heightening competition from existing and new companies remain headwinds. The uncertainty over PC sales adds to its woes. The stock has underperformed the industry over the past year.”

Several other analysts also recently issued reports on the stock. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Symantec from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Saturday, January 13th. CIBC reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $33.00 price objective (down from $35.00) on shares of Symantec in a report on Thursday, November 2nd. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $27.00 price objective on shares of Symantec in a report on Friday, November 3rd. Standpoint Research downgraded shares of Symantec from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, October 9th. Finally, Cowen downgraded shares of Symantec from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $31.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Monday, October 9th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have assigned a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $31.96.

Shares of Symantec (SYMC) traded up $0.21 on Friday, hitting $27.46. 7,862,616 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 5,067,009. Symantec has a 52 week low of $25.65 and a 52 week high of $34.20. The firm has a market cap of $16,894.51, a price-to-earnings ratio of -68.65, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.76 and a beta of 1.08. The company has a current ratio of 1.12, a quick ratio of 1.12 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.72.

Symantec (NASDAQ:SYMC) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The technology company reported $0.40 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.26 by $0.14. Symantec had a negative net margin of 5.29% and a positive return on equity of 12.33%. The company had revenue of $1.28 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.27 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.30 EPS. Symantec’s quarterly revenue was up 25.7% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts anticipate that Symantec will post 1.05 EPS for the current year.

In related news, CFO Nicholas R. Noviello sold 375,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $29.38, for a total transaction of $11,017,500.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 565,319 shares in the company, valued at approximately $16,609,072.22. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, EVP Francis C. Rosch sold 57,103 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.42, for a total transaction of $1,565,764.26. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 325,026 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $8,912,212.92. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. increased its position in shares of Symantec by 7.9% during the 2nd quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 3,982 shares of the technology company’s stock worth $112,000 after purchasing an additional 292 shares in the last quarter. Sun Life Financial INC increased its position in Symantec by 44,100.0% in the 2nd quarter. Sun Life Financial INC now owns 4,420 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $125,000 after acquiring an additional 4,410 shares in the last quarter. Harfst & Associates Inc. acquired a new stake in Symantec in the 2nd quarter valued at about $127,000. United Bank Inc. acquired a new stake in Symantec in the 3rd quarter valued at about $200,000. Finally, Jaffetilchin Investment Partners LLC acquired a new stake in Symantec in the 3rd quarter valued at about $225,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 94.85% of the company’s stock.

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About Symantec

Symantec Corporation is a United States-based cyber security company. The Company offers products under categories, such as threat protection, information protection and cyber security services. Under threat protection, it offers Advanced Threat Protection, Endpoint Protection, Endpoint Protection Cloud, IT Management Suite, Email Security, Cloud, Data Center Security and Cloud Workload Protection products.

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