Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Square (NYSE:SQ) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report released on Tuesday, November 14th.
According to Zacks, “Square has outperformed the industry on a year-to-date basis. The company’s comprehensive commerce ecosystem, accelerated business growth and focus on integration, automation, and platform are key catalysts. The company's plan to open a wholly-owned brick-and-mortar bank is positive in our view. Meanwhile, automation is enabling the company to increase reach of financial system to more people, scale up its own operations and help sellers with advanced CRM tools. Moreover, the company displays consistent business growth through balancing investment and margin expansion. However, it’s currently a loss making enterprise, which doesn't augur with investors. Moreover, vulnerability to intense competition and changing technology, industry standards and seller and buyer needs pose signficant challenges.”
A number of other brokerages also recently commented on SQ. Jefferies Group boosted their price objective on Square from $38.00 to $44.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Monday, November 13th. Vetr downgraded Square from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating and set a $43.40 price target for the company. in a report on Monday, November 13th. Oppenheimer upped their price target on Square from $35.00 to $41.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a report on Friday, November 10th. Canaccord Genuity upped their price target on Square from $26.00 to $33.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a report on Thursday, November 9th. Finally, Barclays increased their price objective on Square from $28.00 to $37.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a report on Thursday, November 9th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have given a hold rating and twenty-four have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $33.82.
Square (NYSE:SQ) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 8th. The technology company reported $0.07 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.05 by $0.02. Square had a negative net margin of 3.04% and a negative return on equity of 7.98%. The company had revenue of $257.12 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $244.95 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.01 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 44.6% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts anticipate that Square will post -0.16 EPS for the current fiscal year.
In other news, insider Ajmere Dale sold 20,286 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $39.12, for a total value of $793,588.32. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 134,518 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,262,344.16. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, CEO Jack Dorsey sold 50,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $40.48, for a total value of $2,024,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 1,425,591 shares of company stock worth $47,976,777. 32.68% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in SQ. Almanack Investment Partners LLC. purchased a new stake in shares of Square during the 2nd quarter valued at about $117,000. Riverhead Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Square during the 2nd quarter valued at about $149,000. Hudock Capital Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Square during the 3rd quarter valued at about $157,000. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank raised its holdings in shares of Square by 19.4% during the 2nd quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 6,752 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $158,000 after buying an additional 1,099 shares during the period. Finally, Pacer Advisors Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Square by 42.2% during the 2nd quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 8,368 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $196,000 after buying an additional 2,485 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 54.38% of the company’s stock.
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Square, Inc (Square) is a commerce ecosystem. The Company enables its sellers start, run and grow their businesses. It combines software with hardware to enable sellers to turn mobile devices and computing devices into payments and point-of-sale solutions. Once a seller downloads the Square Point of Sale mobile application, they can take their first payment.
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