Strayer Education (STRA) Upgraded to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Strayer Education (NASDAQ:STRA) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report issued on Friday, January 5th. The brokerage presently has a $100.00 target price on the health services provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target would indicate a potential upside of 7.09% from the stock’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Strayer Education’s convenient, accessible and flexible educational programs are designed to meet the educational needs of working adults. Strayer University is reducing the cost of its programs in order to enhance their affordability. Moreover, the acquisition of New York Code and Design Academy is encouraging, given the high demand for web and applications software development professionals.Importantly, Strayer and Capella decided to merge in an all-stock deal of equal transactions, expected to close in the third quarter of 2018. Post completion, Strayer’s shareholders will own approximately 52% of the combined company. The merger is expected to ensure student success, positive employment outcomes and be accretive to Strayer’s earnings by 20% to 25% by 2019. However, tuition cuts and an unfavorable mix of students toward lower undergraduate tuition have resulted in declining revenue per student over the past few quarters.”

Several other research analysts have also recently weighed in on STRA. Piper Jaffray Companies reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $87.00 price target on shares of Strayer Education in a report on Tuesday, October 17th. BMO Capital Markets restated an “outperform” rating and set a $118.00 target price (up previously from $99.00) on shares of Strayer Education in a report on Tuesday, October 31st. ValuEngine lowered shares of Strayer Education from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, December 1st. Finally, BidaskClub lowered shares of Strayer Education from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, December 5th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $102.25.

Shares of Strayer Education (STRA) traded up $0.89 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $93.38. 42,000 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 61,967. The company has a market capitalization of $1,042.81, a P/E ratio of 26.68 and a beta of 0.90. Strayer Education has a one year low of $71.31 and a one year high of $100.72.

Strayer Education (NASDAQ:STRA) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Monday, October 30th. The health services provider reported $0.34 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.39 by ($0.05). The business had revenue of $108.50 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $107.54 million. Strayer Education had a return on equity of 17.27% and a net margin of 8.52%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 6.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.25 earnings per share. equities research analysts expect that Strayer Education will post 3.35 earnings per share for the current year.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Strayer Education by 3.2% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,143,120 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $106,562,000 after purchasing an additional 35,328 shares in the last quarter. Capital World Investors boosted its stake in shares of Strayer Education by 0.4% in the 2nd quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 724,200 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $67,510,000 after purchasing an additional 3,095 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC raised its holdings in Strayer Education by 3.3% in the 2nd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 527,600 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $49,183,000 after buying an additional 16,693 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its holdings in Strayer Education by 0.4% in the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 442,903 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $38,653,000 after buying an additional 1,786 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Goodnow Investment Group LLC raised its holdings in Strayer Education by 2.1% in the 3rd quarter. Goodnow Investment Group LLC now owns 396,321 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $34,587,000 after buying an additional 8,210 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 93.73% of the company’s stock.

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About Strayer Education

Strayer Education, Inc is an education services holding company. The Company provides post-secondary education and other academic programs, through its subsidiaries, Strayer University (the University) and New York Code and Design Academy (NYCDA). As of December 31, 2016, the University offered undergraduate and graduate degree programs in business administration, accounting, information technology, education, health services administration, nursing, public administration and criminal justice at 74 physical campuses located in the Mid-Atlantic and Southern regions of the United States, and online.

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