Zacks Investment Research Upgrades Activision Blizzard (ATVI) to Buy

Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report issued on Tuesday. The firm presently has a $77.00 price target on the stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective would suggest a potential upside of 13.12% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Activision reported encouraging fourth-quarter 2017 results. Shares have outperformed the industry in the past year. The company's popularity is primarily driven by its well-known franchises, which will continue to fuel top-line growth. Increasing digital revenues, King Digital buyout and strength in franchises such as Call of Duty, Destiny & Overwatch are the key drivers. The company’s attempts to become a broad-based media company are prudent in our view. Apart from launching a movie studio and consumer products division, the company is also strengthening its presence in the lucrative e-sports market. However, hit driven and competitive nature of the video game industry begets caution.”

Other equities analysts have also issued reports about the company. Piper Jaffray Companies reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $70.00 price objective on shares of Activision Blizzard in a research note on Wednesday, November 8th. KeyCorp reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $74.00 price objective on shares of Activision Blizzard in a research note on Tuesday, October 17th. UBS Group lifted their price objective on Activision Blizzard from $72.00 to $75.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, November 3rd. Jefferies Group boosted their price target on Activision Blizzard from $80.00 to $82.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, November 3rd. Finally, SunTrust Banks set a $72.00 price target on Activision Blizzard and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Sunday, October 29th. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twenty-six have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $71.95.

Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ ATVI) traded down $0.25 during trading on Tuesday, hitting $68.07. The stock had a trading volume of 5,133,695 shares, compared to its average volume of 6,710,000. The company has a quick ratio of 1.77, a current ratio of 1.78 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.46. The company has a market capitalization of $51,440.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 194.49, a PEG ratio of 1.85 and a beta of 1.11. Activision Blizzard has a twelve month low of $44.47 and a twelve month high of $74.94.

Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 8th. The company reported $0.94 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.92 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $2.64 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.55 billion. Activision Blizzard had a return on equity of 17.48% and a net margin of 3.89%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.65 earnings per share. analysts predict that Activision Blizzard will post 2.48 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, CEO of King Digital Entertainment Riccardo Zacconi sold 19,761 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $63.64, for a total value of $1,257,590.04. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 41,435 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,636,923.40. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 2.12% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of ATVI. BlackRock Inc. lifted its holdings in Activision Blizzard by 5.8% during the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 54,967,203 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,480,525,000 after buying an additional 2,992,193 shares in the last quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. acquired a new position in Activision Blizzard during the 4th quarter worth $169,547,000. Egerton Capital UK LLP lifted its holdings in Activision Blizzard by 22.0% during the 4th quarter. Egerton Capital UK LLP now owns 11,051,017 shares of the company’s stock worth $699,750,000 after buying an additional 1,991,213 shares in the last quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. lifted its holdings in Activision Blizzard by 108.6% during the 3rd quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 3,184,687 shares of the company’s stock worth $205,444,000 after buying an additional 1,657,730 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its holdings in Activision Blizzard by 25.6% during the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 7,476,125 shares of the company’s stock worth $482,285,000 after buying an additional 1,523,740 shares in the last quarter. 85.61% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Activision Blizzard Company Profile

Activision Blizzard, Inc is a developer and publisher of interactive entertainment content and services. The Company develops and distributes content and services across various gaming platforms, including video game consoles, personal computers (PC) and mobile devices. Its segments include Activision Publishing, Inc (Activision), Blizzard Entertainment, Inc (Blizzard), King Digital Entertainment (King) and Other.

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