Harvest Capital Strategies LLC bought a new position in shares of L Brands Inc (NYSE:LB) during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm bought 100,000 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock, valued at approximately $6,022,000. L Brands makes up 1.0% of Harvest Capital Strategies LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 23rd biggest holding.
Other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Fosun International Ltd boosted its holdings in L Brands by 205.4% during the third quarter. Fosun International Ltd now owns 532,022 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $22,137,000 after purchasing an additional 357,797 shares in the last quarter. Alyeska Investment Group L.P. boosted its holdings in L Brands by 4.0% during the third quarter. Alyeska Investment Group L.P. now owns 855,019 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $35,577,000 after purchasing an additional 33,005 shares in the last quarter. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. boosted its holdings in L Brands by 31.0% during the third quarter. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. now owns 18,512 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $770,000 after purchasing an additional 4,378 shares in the last quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System boosted its holdings in L Brands by 7.0% during the third quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 585,641 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $24,369,000 after purchasing an additional 38,141 shares in the last quarter. Finally, American International Group Inc. boosted its holdings in L Brands by 74.8% during the fourth quarter. American International Group Inc. now owns 10,436,938 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $628,512,000 after purchasing an additional 4,466,237 shares in the last quarter. 81.05% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
A number of research firms have weighed in on LB. Scotiabank reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $67.00 price objective on shares of L Brands in a report on Wednesday, November 22nd. Credit Suisse Group assumed coverage on shares of L Brands in a research note on Monday. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $45.00 target price for the company. B. Riley set a $58.00 target price on shares of L Brands and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, November 16th. Citigroup reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $58.00 target price on shares of L Brands in a research note on Friday, January 5th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut shares of L Brands from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have given a hold rating and eleven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $50.33.
L Brands (NYSE:LB) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, February 28th. The specialty retailer reported $2.11 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $2.05 by $0.06. The company had revenue of $4.82 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.72 billion. L Brands had a net margin of 7.78% and a negative return on equity of 96.25%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $2.03 EPS. analysts expect that L Brands Inc will post 3.17 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 9th. Shareholders of record on Friday, February 23rd were given a dividend of $0.60 per share. This represents a $2.40 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 5.71%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, February 22nd. L Brands’s payout ratio is 69.77%.
L Brands announced that its Board of Directors has approved a stock repurchase plan on Thursday, March 8th that allows the company to buyback $226.90 million in shares. This buyback authorization allows the specialty retailer to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are generally a sign that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.
About L Brands
L Brands, Inc operates specialty retail business. The Company is focused on women’s intimate and other apparel, personal care, beauty and home fragrance categories. Its segments include Victoria’s Secret, Bath & Body Works, and Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works International. It sells its merchandise through company-owned specialty retail stores in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Greater China, which are mall-based; through Websites, and through international franchise, license and wholesale partners.
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