Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Capella Education Co. (NASDAQ:CPLA) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Tuesday morning. The brokerage currently has $65.00 price target on the stock.
According to Zacks, “Capella Education reported impressive results in the first two quarters of 2016 with revenues, enrollment levels and earnings per share showing significant improvement. Total enrollment growth in the first two quarters of the year was driven by higher enrollment in FlexPath programs, improved early-cohort persistence and higher percentage of returning learners. Moreover, the company’s focus non-degree programs are encouraging and should top line in the long term. Capella expects the Hackbright Academy and DevMountain acquiistions to contribute to revenues in near term. However, revenues were hurt in the past two quarters by an unfavorable degree mix shift and change in accounting for revenue recognition. Moreover, an unfavorable shift in the student mix from PhD to the masters’ degree program is hurting revenue per student.”
Several other equities analysts have also issued reports on CPLA. Barrington Research lifted their price target on Capella Education from $60.00 to $66.00 and gave the stock an outperform rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 27th. Credit Suisse Group AG set a $70.00 price target on Capella Education and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Monday, September 12th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company. Capella Education currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $59.80.
Shares of Capella Education (NASDAQ:CPLA) opened at 57.20 on Tuesday. The company has a market capitalization of $661.40 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.74 and a beta of 1.10. Capella Education has a 1-year low of $39.06 and a 1-year high of $63.01. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $59.21 and a 200-day moving average of $54.90.
Capella Education (NASDAQ:CPLA) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The company reported $0.82 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.87 by $0.05. The company earned $106.70 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $105.93 million. Capella Education had a return on equity of 20.80% and a net margin of 9.12%. Capella Education’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.83 EPS. Analysts forecast that Capella Education will post $3.49 earnings per share for the current year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 14th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 26th will be given a $0.39 dividend. This represents a $1.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.73%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 24th. Capella Education’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 48.30%.
In other Capella Education news, Director Darrell R. Tukua sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.23, for a total transaction of $306,150.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, CEO J Kevin Gilligan sold 16,892 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $59.23, for a total value of $1,000,513.16. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 69,705 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,128,627.15. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 6.50% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Mason Street Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Capella Education during the second quarter worth about $109,000. Legal & General Group Plc increased its stake in Capella Education by 32.8% in the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 2,686 shares of the company’s stock worth $141,000 after buying an additional 664 shares in the last quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA increased its stake in Capella Education by 117.0% in the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 3,541 shares of the company’s stock worth $186,000 after buying an additional 1,909 shares in the last quarter. SECOR Capital Advisors LP purchased a new stake in Capella Education during the second quarter worth about $240,000. Finally, BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in Capella Education by 384.9% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 4,902 shares of the company’s stock worth $258,000 after buying an additional 3,891 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 90.37% of the company’s stock.
Capella Education Company Profile
Capella Education Company is an online postsecondary education services company. The Company’s academic programs are delivered through its subsidiary, Capella University (the University), which is an online academic institution offering online postsecondary education services primarily to working adults.
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