General Dynamics (GD) Lifted to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of General Dynamics (NYSE:GD) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report sent to investors on Thursday, Zacks.com reports. Zacks Investment Research currently has $188.00 target price on the aerospace company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “General Dynamics company boasts a strong position in the U.S. defense space and overseas. General Dynamics continues to witness strong order growth, procuring some pivotal contracts from the U.S. government and also from its overseas clients. Apart from solid demand for its varied defense products leading to organic growth, a notable acquisition strategy also adds to General Dynamics’ inorganic growth. Notably, General Dynamics acquired CSRA Inc. in April 2018 for $9.7 billion, and will now provide high-tech IT solutions to the government IT market. However, the company operates in a highly competitive market. The company also incurs high interest expenses. General Dynamics' shares also underperformed its industry in the past twelve months.”

A number of other analysts have also recently weighed in on the stock. UBS Group raised their target price on shares of General Dynamics from $175.00 to $190.00 and gave the stock a neutral rating in a report on Thursday, April 25th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded shares of General Dynamics from an underweight rating to a neutral rating and raised their target price for the stock from $188.00 to $200.00 in a report on Thursday, April 25th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Cowen restated a buy rating and set a $202.00 target price on shares of General Dynamics in a report on Wednesday, April 24th. Credit Suisse Group cut shares of General Dynamics from an outperform rating to a neutral rating and reduced their target price for the stock from $190.00 to $184.00 in a report on Friday, February 15th. Finally, Drexel Hamilton restated a buy rating and set a $230.00 target price on shares of General Dynamics in a report on Monday, February 4th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $197.82.

NYSE:GD traded down $2.08 during trading hours on Thursday, reaching $167.77. 24,922 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,424,693. The stock has a market capitalization of $48.45 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.66, a PEG ratio of 1.61 and a beta of 1.13. General Dynamics has a 12 month low of $143.87 and a 12 month high of $208.88. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.94, a quick ratio of 0.82 and a current ratio of 1.23.

General Dynamics (NYSE:GD) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th. The aerospace company reported $2.56 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.38 by $0.18. The firm had revenue of $9.26 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $8.90 billion. General Dynamics had a net margin of 8.68% and a return on equity of 27.62%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 22.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm posted $2.65 earnings per share. On average, sell-side analysts expect that General Dynamics will post 11.74 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 10th. Investors of record on Friday, April 12th were given a $1.02 dividend. This represents a $4.08 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.43%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, April 11th. This is an increase from General Dynamics’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.93. General Dynamics’s dividend payout ratio is 35.73%.

In other General Dynamics news, Director Lester L. Lyles sold 4,580 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $172.42, for a total value of $789,683.60. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 12,314 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,123,179.88. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, VP Gary L. Whited sold 14,640 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, March 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $165.38, for a total transaction of $2,421,163.20. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 30,462 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,037,805.56. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 64,690 shares of company stock valued at $11,052,603. 7.10% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in GD. Weiss Asset Management LP acquired a new position in shares of General Dynamics during the 1st quarter worth $205,000. Horizon Investments LLC acquired a new position in shares of General Dynamics during the 1st quarter worth $212,000. Merit Financial Group LLC increased its stake in shares of General Dynamics by 39.8% during the 1st quarter. Merit Financial Group LLC now owns 2,359 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $399,000 after purchasing an additional 671 shares during the last quarter. Sandbar Asset Management LLP increased its stake in shares of General Dynamics by 238.5% during the 1st quarter. Sandbar Asset Management LLP now owns 26,912 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $4,556,000 after purchasing an additional 18,961 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Kore Private Wealth LLC acquired a new position in shares of General Dynamics during the 1st quarter worth $195,000. Institutional investors own 86.41% of the company’s stock.

About General Dynamics

General Dynamics Corporation operates as an aerospace and defense company worldwide. It operates in five segments: Aerospace, Combat Systems, Information Technology, Mission Systems, and Marine Systems. The Aerospace segment designs, manufactures, and supports business-jet aircraft; and offers business-aviation services, including maintenance, fixed-base operation, government fleet, aircraft management, charter, and staffing services, as well as integrated aviation solutions.

Featured Article: Asset Allocation, Balancing Your Investments

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on General Dynamics (GD)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Analyst Recommendations for General Dynamics (NYSE:GD)

Receive News & Ratings for General Dynamics Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for General Dynamics and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.