Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Constellation Brands Inc. (NYSE:STZ) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note released on Friday. Zacks Investment Research currently has $186.00 price objective on the stock.
According to Zacks, “Constellation Brands boasts a portfolio of well-known brands and is the largest wine company in the world, which gives it a competitive edge and bolsters its solid market position. The company’s focus on brand building and efforts to include new products in its wine and spirits portfolio are key growth drivers. Also, it remains committed to expanding operations directed toward achieving business growth, as is evident from its numerous acquisitions. These factors, coupled with strong beer business also helped the company to post its seventh straight earnings beat in the last reported quarter. However, the risk of increasing taxes continues to be a concern for the company. Intense competition, currency fluctuations and seasonal nature of the company’s business can also dent its operating performance. Nonetheless, estimates have been largely stable going into the second quarter earnings release.”
Several other brokerages also recently commented on STZ. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of Constellation Brands in a research note on Friday, July 15th. Susquehanna reaffirmed a hold rating on shares of Constellation Brands in a research note on Monday, August 8th. Wells Fargo & Co. reaffirmed an outperform rating and issued a $185.00 target price on shares of Constellation Brands in a research note on Wednesday, July 6th. SunTrust Banks Inc. reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $180.00 target price on shares of Constellation Brands in a research note on Friday, June 3rd. Finally, Morgan Stanley reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of Constellation Brands in a research note on Thursday, September 15th. Six investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twelve have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Constellation Brands currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $174.46.
Constellation Brands (NYSE:STZ) opened at 162.85 on Friday. Constellation Brands has a 12-month low of $122.35 and a 12-month high of $168.68. The company has a market cap of $32.65 billion, a P/E ratio of 29.34 and a beta of 0.72. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $164.79 and its 200-day moving average is $158.48.
Constellation Brands (NYSE:STZ) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, June 30th. The company reported $1.54 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.52 by $0.02. Constellation Brands had a net margin of 15.53% and a return on equity of 17.66%. The firm earned $1.87 billion during the quarter. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.26 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 14.8% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts predict that Constellation Brands will post $6.31 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, August 24th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, August 10th were given a $0.40 dividend. This represents a $1.60 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.98%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, August 8th. Constellation Brands’s payout ratio is presently 28.78%.
In other news, CFO David Eric Klein sold 14,300 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $166.27, for a total value of $2,377,661.00. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 36,152 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $6,010,993.04. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, VP Thomas Michael Kane sold 7,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, July 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $163.26, for a total transaction of $1,142,820.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 8,764 shares in the company, valued at $1,430,810.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 10.63% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
Several institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of STZ. Egerton Capital UK LLP bought a new position in shares of Constellation Brands during the second quarter valued at $305,544,000. Norges Bank bought a new position in shares of Constellation Brands during the fourth quarter valued at $139,769,000. Lone Pine Capital LLC raised its position in shares of Constellation Brands by 13.1% in the second quarter. Lone Pine Capital LLC now owns 6,666,012 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,102,558,000 after buying an additional 769,791 shares during the last quarter. Bank of Montreal Can bought a new position in shares of Constellation Brands during the second quarter valued at $75,993,000. Finally, Newbrook Capital Advisors LP bought a new position in shares of Constellation Brands during the first quarter valued at $64,138,000. 75.05% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
About Constellation Brands
Constellation Brands, Inc is an international beverage alcohol company. The Company is a producer and marketer of beer and wine the United States and Canada. Its segments include Beer, Wine and Spirits, and Corporate Operations and Other. It is a multi-category supplier (beer, wine and spirits) of beverage alcohol in the United States.
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