Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Activision Blizzard Inc. (NASDAQ:ATVI) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note released on Wednesday. The brokerage currently has $50.00 price objective on the stock.
According to Zacks, “ACTIVISION BLIZZARD, INC. is a worldwide pure-play online and console game publisher with leading market positions across all categories of the rapidly growing interactive entertainment software industry. Activision Blizzard’s portfolio includes best-selling video games such as Guitar Hero, Call of Duty, and Tony Hawk, as well as Spider-Man, X-Men, Shrek, James Bond and TRANSFORMERS, leading franchises such as Crash Bandicoot and Spyro and Blizzard Entertainment’s StarCraft, Diablo, and Warcraft franchises including the global number one subscription-based massively multi-player online role-playing game, World of Warcraft. Activision Blizzard maintains operations in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Sweden, Spain, Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands, Romania, Australia, Chile, India, Japan, China, the region of Taiwan and South Korea. “
A number of other equities analysts have also recently commented on the company. MKM Partners cut Activision Blizzard from a buy rating to a neutral rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $40.00 to $42.00 in a research note on Thursday, July 28th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Robert W. Baird reaffirmed an outperform rating and issued a $46.00 price target (up from $43.00) on shares of Activision Blizzard in a research note on Sunday, August 7th. Jefferies Group reiterated a buy rating on shares of Activision Blizzard in a research report on Monday, August 22nd. Piper Jaffray Cos. reiterated an overweight rating and issued a $42.00 price objective on shares of Activision Blizzard in a research report on Wednesday, July 27th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reiterated a market perform rating and issued a $38.00 price objective on shares of Activision Blizzard in a research report on Wednesday, August 10th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eighteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $44.72.
Shares of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) opened at 43.98 on Wednesday. Activision Blizzard has a 52-week low of $26.49 and a 52-week high of $45.12. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $42.19 and a 200-day moving average price of $38.49. The stock has a market capitalization of $32.61 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 44.29 and a beta of 1.02.
Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 4th. The company reported $0.45 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.42 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $1.57 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.44 billion. Activision Blizzard had a return on equity of 14.49% and a net margin of 13.95%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 112.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.13 EPS. On average, equities analysts anticipate that Activision Blizzard will post $1.99 earnings per share for the current year.
In related news, COO Thomas Tippl sold 75,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.76, for a total transaction of $3,282,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, CEO Robert A. Kotick sold 4,588,775 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $40.51, for a total value of $185,891,275.25. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 797,049 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $32,288,454.99. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 25.23% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Prudential Financial Inc. boosted its stake in Activision Blizzard by 234.7% in the first quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 2,183,756 shares of the company’s stock worth $73,899,000 after buying an additional 1,531,300 shares during the period. Teachers Advisors Inc. raised its stake in Activision Blizzard by 4.5% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors Inc. now owns 1,638,317 shares of the company’s stock valued at $55,441,000 after buying an additional 70,508 shares in the last quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC raised its stake in Activision Blizzard by 9.4% in the first quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 3,506,267 shares of the company’s stock valued at $118,652,000 after buying an additional 301,957 shares in the last quarter. Ngam Advisors L.P. raised its stake in Activision Blizzard by 190.9% in the first quarter. Ngam Advisors L.P. now owns 174,429 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,903,000 after buying an additional 114,461 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Gerber Kawasaki Wealth & Investment Management raised its stake in Activision Blizzard by 14.8% in the first quarter. Gerber Kawasaki Wealth & Investment Management now owns 107,760 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,646,000 after buying an additional 13,898 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 83.67% of the company’s stock.
Activision Blizzard Company Profile
Activision Blizzard, Inc is a developer and publisher of online, personal computer (PC), video game console, handheld, mobile and tablet games. The Company operates through Activision Publishing, Inc (Activision) and its subsidiaries, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc (Blizzard) and its subsidiaries, and Other segments.
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