Jack in the Box (JACK) Lifted to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Jack in the Box (NASDAQ:JACK) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Jack in the Box’s premium and value offerings, focus on menu innovation, franchising and delivery are expected boost sales, going forward. However, the company’s limited international presence is a disadvantage and could hurt its competitive position. Comps at Qdoba brand had suffered due to poor restaurant level execution. A soft industry backdrop continues to hurt sales too. Pre-opening costs, promotional activity and labor expenses have also been weighing on margins. Further, increased competition in breakfast and lunch day parts remain concerns. Jack in the Box’s shares underperformed the industry in the past year. Estimates too have moved down ahead of the fiscal fourth-quarter earnings release.”

Other analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. SunTrust Banks reissued a “buy” rating and set a $113.00 price objective on shares of Jack in the Box in a report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Oppenheimer reissued a “buy” rating and set a $125.00 price objective on shares of Jack in the Box in a report on Monday, November 20th. Robert W. Baird set a $115.00 price objective on Jack in the Box and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, November 27th. Goldman Sachs Group raised Jack in the Box from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, January 19th. Finally, Barclays reaffirmed an “equal weight” rating and issued a $101.00 price target (up from $100.00) on shares of Jack in the Box in a research note on Tuesday, January 16th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $111.31.

Shares of Jack in the Box (NASDAQ JACK) traded up $1.17 during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $83.07. 838,200 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 881,476. The firm has a market cap of $2,418.68, a P/E ratio of 18.88, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.51 and a beta of 0.42. The company has a current ratio of 0.53, a quick ratio of 0.51 and a debt-to-equity ratio of -2.79. Jack in the Box has a 1-year low of $79.30 and a 1-year high of $113.00.

Jack in the Box (NASDAQ:JACK) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, November 29th. The restaurant operator reported $0.73 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.89 by ($0.16). The firm had revenue of $338.75 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $341.34 million. Jack in the Box had a negative return on equity of 30.55% and a net margin of 8.71%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 15.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.03 earnings per share. research analysts predict that Jack in the Box will post 4.02 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, VP Dean C. Gordon sold 278 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $102.22, for a total value of $28,417.16. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 3,924 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $401,111.28. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, SVP Paul D. Melancon sold 461 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, December 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $99.78, for a total value of $45,998.58. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 5,370 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $535,818.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 25,671 shares of company stock valued at $2,586,928. Insiders own 2.60% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Hudson Bay Capital Management LP bought a new stake in Jack in the Box in the 4th quarter valued at $1,128,000. Stormborn Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in Jack in the Box in the 4th quarter valued at $8,980,000. OppenheimerFunds Inc. raised its stake in Jack in the Box by 20.3% in the 4th quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 5,887 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $578,000 after acquiring an additional 995 shares during the period. Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership bought a new stake in Jack in the Box in the 4th quarter valued at $6,425,000. Finally, UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. raised its stake in Jack in the Box by 5.3% in the 4th quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 19,514 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $1,915,000 after acquiring an additional 983 shares during the period. 98.99% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Jack in the Box

Jack in the Box Inc operates and franchises Jack in the Box quick-service restaurants (QSRs) and Qdoba Mexican Eats (Qdoba) fast-casual restaurants. The Company operates in two segments: Jack in the Box and Qdoba restaurant operations. Qdoba is a fast-casual Mexican food brand in the United States, offering food items including burritos, tacos, salads, and quesadillas.

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