Yelp Inc. (YELP) Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research to Strong-Buy

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Yelp Inc. (NYSE:YELP) from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note published on Thursday, November 2nd. They currently have $54.00 price target on the local business review company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Yelp, Inc. is a website engaged in providing information through online community offering social networking. It covers restaurants, shopping, nightlife, financial services, health and a variety of services. The company serves customers in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Switzerland and Belgium. Yelp, Inc. is headquartered in San Francisco, California. “

Several other equities research analysts also recently weighed in on YELP. BidaskClub raised shares of Yelp from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 12th. Morgan Stanley reiterated an equal weight rating and set a $26.00 price target (down previously from $28.00) on shares of Yelp in a report on Thursday, July 20th. Roth Capital set a $21.00 price target on shares of Yelp and gave the stock a sell rating in a research note on Monday, July 31st. B. Riley restated a neutral rating and set a $36.00 price objective on shares of Yelp in a research report on Friday, August 4th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC upped their price objective on shares of Yelp from $37.00 to $43.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Friday, August 4th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seventeen have issued a hold rating, twenty have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $43.37.

Yelp (NYSE YELP) traded up $0.01 on Thursday, reaching $45.91. 710,500 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 2,566,513. Yelp has a one year low of $26.93 and a one year high of $48.17. The stock has a market capitalization of $3,804.60, a PE ratio of 208.64, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 10.31 and a beta of 1.29.

Yelp (NYSE:YELP) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The local business review company reported $0.29 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.01) by $0.30. The firm had revenue of $222.40 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $220.75 million. Yelp had a net margin of 2.31% and a return on equity of 2.20%. Yelp’s quarterly revenue was up 19.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.22 earnings per share. analysts predict that Yelp will post 0.17 EPS for the current year.

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Yelp announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share repurchase program on Thursday, August 3rd that authorizes the company to buyback $200.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the local business review company to reacquire up to 7.9% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are typically a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

In other news, CEO Jeremy Stoppelman sold 13,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $41.94, for a total transaction of $545,220.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Geoffrey L. Donaker sold 6,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $45.59, for a total value of $273,540.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 9,590 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $437,208.10. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 300,481 shares of company stock valued at $13,254,185 in the last ninety days. Company insiders own 10.10% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Strs Ohio bought a new stake in Yelp in the second quarter valued at $108,000. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Yelp by 28,585.7% during the third quarter. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. now owns 4,016 shares of the local business review company’s stock worth $174,000 after purchasing an additional 4,002 shares during the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. boosted its holdings in Yelp by 98.8% in the second quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 4,091 shares of the local business review company’s stock valued at $123,000 after acquiring an additional 2,033 shares during the last quarter. Commerzbank Aktiengesellschaft FI bought a new position in Yelp in the third quarter valued at about $204,000. Finally, Turner Investments LLC bought a new position in Yelp in the third quarter valued at about $217,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 87.69% of the company’s stock.

Yelp Company Profile

Yelp Inc (Yelp) connects people with local businesses by bringing ‘word of mouth’ online and providing a platform for businesses and consumers to engage and transact. The Company offers local business review sites. Yelp provides a platform for consumers to share their everyday local business experiences with other consumers by posting reviews, tips, photos and videos, and to engage directly with businesses, through reviews, its Request-A-Quote and Message the Business features, and by completing transactions on the Yelp Platform.

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Analyst Recommendations for Yelp (NYSE:YELP)

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