J B Hunt Transport Services (JBHT) Lifted to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

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J B Hunt Transport Services (NASDAQ:JBHT) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday, September 18th. The firm currently has a $137.00 price target on the transportation company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective would indicate a potential upside of 25.35% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “We expect J.B. Hunt's third-quarter results, scheduled to be revealed on Oct 16, to be aided by higher freight rates arising from strong shipping demand. Results are also expected to be boosted by a favorable pricing environment and lower tax rate. J.B. Hunt's   guidance for 2018 is also impressive.  The top line is projected to increase between 11% and 15% in the current year on the back of impressive performances at it its key divisions. The company's acquisition of Special Logistics Dedicated and its affiliated is another positive. The transaction is expected to be accretive in the current year. We are impressed by the company’s efforts to reward shareholders through dividend payments and share repurchases. However, high operating expenses due to increased driver wages are limiting bottom-line growth for quite a while and are expected to continue doing so in the third quarter as well.”

Other analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. BidaskClub upgraded J B Hunt Transport Services from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, August 3rd. Cowen upped their target price on J B Hunt Transport Services from $123.00 to $132.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 17th. Stifel Nicolaus upped their target price on J B Hunt Transport Services from $122.00 to $123.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 17th. ValuEngine upgraded J B Hunt Transport Services from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, September 11th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group upped their target price on J B Hunt Transport Services from $140.00 to $143.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 17th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have given a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. J B Hunt Transport Services presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $129.05.

Shares of JBHT traded down $1.00 during trading hours on Tuesday, hitting $109.29. 1,480,271 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 897,167. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.37, a quick ratio of 1.13 and a current ratio of 1.13. J B Hunt Transport Services has a 12-month low of $100.25 and a 12-month high of $131.74. The stock has a market capitalization of $13.01 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.22, a PEG ratio of 1.74 and a beta of 0.93.

J B Hunt Transport Services (NASDAQ:JBHT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Monday, July 16th. The transportation company reported $1.37 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.28 by $0.09. J B Hunt Transport Services had a return on equity of 26.63% and a net margin of 9.54%. The firm had revenue of $2.14 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.05 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $0.88 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 23.9% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that J B Hunt Transport Services will post 5.4 earnings per share for the current year.

In other J B Hunt Transport Services news, CFO David G. Mee sold 6,126 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, July 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $121.47, for a total transaction of $744,125.22. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 110,500 shares in the company, valued at approximately $13,422,435. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Bradley W. Hicks sold 500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $122.43, for a total value of $61,215.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 16,900 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,069,067. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 38,018 shares of company stock worth $4,630,817. 4.20% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Janus Henderson Group PLC increased its holdings in J B Hunt Transport Services by 55.7% during the 2nd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 1,250,182 shares of the transportation company’s stock worth $151,960,000 after purchasing an additional 447,102 shares during the period. Buckingham Capital Management Inc. increased its holdings in shares of J B Hunt Transport Services by 28.7% in the 2nd quarter. Buckingham Capital Management Inc. now owns 8,845 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $1,075,000 after acquiring an additional 1,975 shares during the last quarter. Trexquant Investment LP purchased a new position in shares of J B Hunt Transport Services in the 2nd quarter valued at about $1,286,000. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. increased its holdings in shares of J B Hunt Transport Services by 58.7% in the 2nd quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. now owns 16,698 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $2,030,000 after acquiring an additional 6,177 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Swiss National Bank increased its holdings in shares of J B Hunt Transport Services by 3.1% in the 2nd quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 290,458 shares of the transportation company’s stock valued at $35,305,000 after acquiring an additional 8,800 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 73.42% of the company’s stock.

J B Hunt Transport Services Company Profile

J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides surface transportation and delivery services in the continental United States, Canada, and Mexico. It operates through four segments: Intermodal (JBI), Dedicated Contract Services (DCS), Integrated Capacity Solutions (ICS), and Truckload (JBT).

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