Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of VeriSign, Inc. (NASDAQ:VRSN) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report issued on Wednesday, November 1st.
According to Zacks, “VeriSign reported better-than-expected third-quarter 2017 results, which also improved year over year. However, rising operating expenses related to sales and marketing will remain an overhang on margins. The negative impact of search engine adjustments on domain monetization is also a headwind. Additionally, overall renewal rate for domains have been softening, especially for first-time renewals, which will continue to affect its top-line growth. However, rise in domain name registrations in the United States as well as in international markets is a tailwind for the company. Also, we believe that gTLD prospects, international expansion through IDNs and investments in intellectual properties bode well for long-term growth. Shares have also outperformed the industry in the past one year.”
Other equities research analysts have also issued research reports about the company. BidaskClub lowered VeriSign from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating in a research report on Friday, August 4th. Robert W. Baird reiterated a hold rating and issued a $105.00 target price on shares of VeriSign in a research report on Thursday, August 31st. Citigroup Inc. upped their target price on VeriSign from $101.00 to $111.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a research report on Friday, October 27th. Finally, Cowen and Company reiterated a hold rating and issued a $103.00 target price on shares of VeriSign in a research report on Sunday, October 29th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. VeriSign presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $106.33.
Shares of VeriSign (NASDAQ:VRSN) traded up $1.43 during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $111.18. The stock had a trading volume of 813,300 shares, compared to its average volume of 791,937. VeriSign has a 1-year low of $75.71 and a 1-year high of $111.37. The stock has a market capitalization of $10,818.07, a price-to-earnings ratio of 30.66 and a beta of 1.03. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of -1.45, a current ratio of 1.57 and a quick ratio of 1.57.
VeriSign (NASDAQ:VRSN) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The information services provider reported $1.00 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.97 by $0.03. VeriSign had a negative return on equity of 36.88% and a net margin of 39.79%. The business had revenue of $292.40 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $290.90 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.93 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up 1.7% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts expect that VeriSign will post 3.65 earnings per share for the current year.
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In other VeriSign news, Director Kathleen A. Cote sold 1,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $99.94, for a total value of $149,910.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 38,294 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,827,102.36. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Insiders own 1.02% of the company’s stock.
A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Gruss Capital Management LP lifted its holdings in VeriSign by 10.2% in the third quarter. Gruss Capital Management LP now owns 920,000 shares of the information services provider’s stock valued at $97,879,000 after acquiring an additional 85,000 shares during the period. First Republic Investment Management Inc. acquired a new position in VeriSign in the third quarter valued at approximately $240,000. Nomura Asset Management Co. Ltd. acquired a new position in VeriSign in the third quarter valued at approximately $1,305,000. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. lifted its holdings in VeriSign by 580.5% in the third quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 20,083 shares of the information services provider’s stock valued at $2,134,000 after acquiring an additional 17,132 shares during the period. Finally, Stifel Financial Corp lifted its holdings in VeriSign by 3.2% in the third quarter. Stifel Financial Corp now owns 54,688 shares of the information services provider’s stock valued at $5,819,000 after acquiring an additional 1,697 shares during the period.
VeriSign, Inc is a provider of domain name registry services and Internet security. The Company operates through Registry Services and Security Services segment. Registry Services ensure the security, stability and resiliency of Internet infrastructure and services, including the .com and .net domains, and operation of the root-zone maintainer functions for the core of the Internet’s Domain Name System (DNS).
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