Sotheby’s (BID) Stock Rating Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Sotheby’s (NYSE:BID) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report released on Tuesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Sotheby’s Holdings, Inc. is one of the world’s second largest auctioneers of fine arts, antiques and collectibles, offering property in collecting categories, among them paintings, jewelry, decorative arts, and books. Sotheby’s Holdings, Inc is the parent company of Sotheby’s worldwide auction businesses, art-related financing and private sales activities. The Company operates in countries, with principal salesrooms located in New York and London. The company also regularly conducts auctions in other salesrooms around the world, including Australia, Hong Kong, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Singapore. “

A number of other research firms also recently weighed in on BID. Sidoti reiterated a buy rating and set a $62.00 target price (up previously from $59.00) on shares of Sotheby’s in a report on Friday, July 21st. TheStreet upgraded Sotheby’s from a c rating to a b rating in a report on Monday, August 7th. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded Sotheby’s from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Wednesday, August 9th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $60.33.

Shares of Sotheby’s (NYSE BID) opened at 44.50 on Tuesday. Sotheby’s has a 52 week low of $33.85 and a 52 week high of $57.95. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $47.32 and a 200-day moving average price of $49.37. The firm has a market cap of $2.34 billion, a PE ratio of 31.92 and a beta of 1.84.

Sotheby’s (NYSE:BID) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The specialty retailer reported $1.43 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.51 by ($0.08). Sotheby’s had a return on equity of 18.72% and a net margin of 8.49%. The firm had revenue of $314.90 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $313.90 million. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.51 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 5.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts predict that Sotheby’s will post $1.96 earnings per share for the current year.

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Sotheby’s declared that its board has authorized a share repurchase program on Tuesday, August 15th that permits the company to buyback $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the specialty retailer to buy up to 4.1% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of BID. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Sotheby’s by 18,784.1% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 4,842,266 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $220,225,000 after acquiring an additional 4,816,624 shares during the period. Discovery Capital Management LLC CT purchased a new position in shares of Sotheby’s during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $29,357,000. Alliancebernstein L.P. grew its stake in shares of Sotheby’s by 19.2% in the 1st quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 3,306,408 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $150,375,000 after buying an additional 532,977 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its stake in shares of Sotheby’s by 9.9% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 3,974,106 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $213,290,000 after buying an additional 356,603 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Prudential Financial Inc. grew its stake in shares of Sotheby’s by 802.2% in the 2nd quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 373,218 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $20,031,000 after buying an additional 331,849 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 89.49% of the company’s stock.

About Sotheby’s

Sotheby’s is a global art business company. The Company is engaged in offering its clients opportunities to connect with and transact in a range of objects. The Company offers a range of art-related services, including the brokerage of private art sales, private jewelry sales through Sotheby’s Diamonds, private selling exhibitions at its galleries, art-related financing, and art advisory services, as well as retail wine locations in New York and Hong Kong.

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