The Gap (NYSE:GPS) Sees Strong Trading Volume

The Gap, Inc. (NYSE:GPS) saw unusually-strong trading volume on Friday . Approximately 481,663 shares were traded during trading, a decline of 93% from the previous session’s volume of 7,031,013 shares.The stock last traded at $32.20 and had previously closed at $31.31.

Several analysts have recently weighed in on GPS shares. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted their price objective on shares of The Gap from $32.00 to $37.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Monday, April 19th. Credit Suisse Group upgraded shares of The Gap from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Monday, May 24th. UBS Group upped their price target on shares of The Gap from $28.00 to $38.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 18th. Jefferies Financial Group assumed coverage on shares of The Gap in a research report on Tuesday, February 16th. They issued a “hold” rating for the company. Finally, Telsey Advisory Group reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $38.00 price target on shares of The Gap in a research report on Friday, May 28th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have given a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $31.53.

The company has a quick ratio of 1.00, a current ratio of 1.65 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.79. The company has a market capitalization of $12.09 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.71, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.48 and a beta of 1.66. The company has a 50 day simple moving average of $33.14.

The Gap (NYSE:GPS) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 26th. The apparel retailer reported $0.48 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of ($0.05) by $0.53. The Gap had a net margin of 2.76% and a return on equity of 14.85%. The business had revenue of $3.99 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.47 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned ($2.51) EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 89.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Sell-side analysts predict that The Gap, Inc. will post 1.77 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, July 28th. Investors of record on Wednesday, July 7th will be given a $0.12 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, July 6th. This represents a $0.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.50%. The Gap’s dividend payout ratio is presently -48.74%.

In related news, Director Robert J. Fisher sold 205,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, March 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $31.73, for a total value of $6,504,650.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 9,623,385 shares in the company, valued at approximately $305,350,006.05. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, EVP Sheila Peters sold 2,977 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, March 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $32.50, for a total transaction of $96,752.50. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 979 shares in the company, valued at $31,817.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 564,685 shares of company stock worth $18,134,242 over the last quarter. Insiders own 41.39% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Harvest Fund Management Co. Ltd lifted its holdings in The Gap by 2,155.2% in the 1st quarter. Harvest Fund Management Co. Ltd now owns 2,368 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock valued at $71,000 after purchasing an additional 2,263 shares in the last quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. purchased a new position in The Gap in the 1st quarter valued at about $205,000. Cigna Investments Inc. New purchased a new position in The Gap in the 1st quarter valued at about $217,000. Fiduciary Trust Co. purchased a new position in The Gap in the 1st quarter valued at about $222,000. Finally, BI Asset Management Fondsmaeglerselskab A S purchased a new position in The Gap in the 1st quarter valued at about $263,000. Institutional investors own 52.70% of the company’s stock.

About The Gap (NYSE:GPS)

The Gap, Inc operates as an apparel retail company. The company offers apparel, accessories, and personal care products for men, women, and children under the Old Navy, Gap, Banana Republic, Athleta, Intermix, and Janie and Jack brands. Its products include denim, tees, fleece, and khakis; eyewear, jewelry, shoes, handbags, and fragrances; and fitness and lifestyle products for use in yoga, training, sports, travel, and everyday activities for women and girls.

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