Zacks Investment Research Lowers Lowe’s Companies (LOW) to Hold

Lowe’s Companies (NYSE:LOW) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Lowe’s boasts a sturdy top-line performance since the past several quarters driven by the company’s pro-customer centric approach as well as robust marketing and merchandising efforts. Strong digital presence has also been fuelling performance. Going ahead, management continues to augment omni-channel capabilities and enhance consumers’ digital shopping experience. Lowe’s expects robust opportunities in the booming U.S. home improvements market, which gained from strong real residential investment and rise in home price during third-quarter fiscal 2018. Moreover, in the said quarter, management unveiled plans to improve merchandise through brand additions, localization and enhance value through innovation that aid driving traffic. However, Lowe’s plans to exit Orchard Supply Hardware business and Mexico retail operations along with shuttering certain non-core businesses and stores have led to higher pre-tax charges.”

LOW has been the subject of a number of other reports. Loop Capital set a $125.00 target price on shares of Lowe’s Companies and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 12th. Gordon Haskett downgraded shares of Lowe’s Companies from an “accumulate” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, November 8th. Wedbush set a $95.00 target price on shares of Lowe’s Companies and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 21st. KeyCorp reduced their target price on shares of Lowe’s Companies from $125.00 to $115.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a research report on Wednesday, November 21st. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus downgraded shares of Lowe’s Companies from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and reduced their target price for the company from $125.00 to $92.00 in a research report on Wednesday, November 21st. Eleven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and sixteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $111.36.

LOW stock traded up $2.47 during trading on Tuesday, reaching $99.35. The stock had a trading volume of 126,238 shares, compared to its average volume of 4,529,307. Lowe’s Companies has a one year low of $81.16 and a one year high of $117.70. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.68, a quick ratio of 0.18 and a current ratio of 1.00. The company has a market capitalization of $77.74 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.62, a PEG ratio of 1.14 and a beta of 1.27.

Lowe’s Companies (NYSE:LOW) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, November 20th. The home improvement retailer reported $1.04 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.98 by $0.06. Lowe’s Companies had a net margin of 5.19% and a return on equity of 72.47%. The business had revenue of $17.42 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $17.36 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.05 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 3.8% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, sell-side analysts forecast that Lowe’s Companies will post 5.11 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Lowe’s Companies news, Director Brian C. Rogers purchased 10,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 23rd. The shares were bought at an average cost of $88.02 per share, for a total transaction of $880,200.00. Following the purchase, the director now owns 10,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $880,200. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 0.30% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of LOW. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund lifted its stake in Lowe’s Companies by 8,621.4% in the 4th quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 17,673,178 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $191,000 after purchasing an additional 17,470,536 shares in the last quarter. Capital International Investors purchased a new stake in Lowe’s Companies in the 3rd quarter worth approximately $746,818,000. FMR LLC lifted its stake in Lowe’s Companies by 8.0% in the 3rd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 21,879,740 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $2,512,233,000 after purchasing an additional 1,616,536 shares in the last quarter. Winslow Capital Management LLC lifted its stake in Lowe’s Companies by 28.4% in the 3rd quarter. Winslow Capital Management LLC now owns 4,081,562 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $468,645,000 after purchasing an additional 901,607 shares in the last quarter. Finally, AQR Capital Management LLC lifted its stake in Lowe’s Companies by 50.0% in the 3rd quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 2,641,814 shares of the home improvement retailer’s stock worth $303,333,000 after purchasing an additional 880,253 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 76.55% of the company’s stock.

Lowe’s Companies Company Profile

Lowe's Companies, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a home improvement retailer in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. It offers a line of products for maintenance, repair, remodeling, and decorating. The company provides home improvement products in various categories, such as lumber and building materials, tools and hardware, appliances, fashion fixtures, rough plumbing and electrical, seasonal and outdoor living, lawn and garden, paint, millwork, flooring, and kitchens, as well as outdoor power equipment.

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