Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Crown Castle International Corp. (NYSE:CCI) from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note issued to investors on Monday. The firm currently has $109.00 price target on the real estate investment trust’s stock.
According to Zacks, “Crown Castle has an extensive tower portfolio, increased demand for the company’s infrastructure, strong business outlook, healthy leasing activity, continual acquisition of towers and growing demand for mobile broadband are likely to benefit the company. Moreover, wireless consumer demand is expected to increase considerably over the next several years, driven by increased innovation and adoption of Internet of Things. Recently concluded AWS-3 spectrum auction conducted by the FCC and the ongoing Incentive Auction are likely to boost the demand for cell towers as wireless operators will have more spectrum to expand and upgrade thier networks. Also, owing to its expansive international presence, Crown Castle remains highly exposed to foreign currency risks.”
Several other research analysts have also commented on the company. Citigroup Inc. lowered Crown Castle International Corp. from a buy rating to a neutral rating and raised their price target for the stock from $94.00 to $109.00 in a research report on Monday, July 11th. Morgan Stanley reiterated an overweight rating and issued a $103.00 price objective on shares of Crown Castle International Corp. in a research note on Friday, July 22nd. Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. reiterated a buy rating on shares of Crown Castle International Corp. in a research note on Tuesday, June 7th. SunTrust Banks Inc. assumed coverage on Crown Castle International Corp. in a research note on Monday, September 12th. They issued a buy rating and a $107.00 price objective on the stock. Finally, Jefferies Group reiterated a buy rating on shares of Crown Castle International Corp. in a research note on Monday, August 22nd. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eleven have assigned a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $102.19.
Crown Castle International Corp. (NYSE:CCI) opened at 94.37 on Monday. Crown Castle International Corp. has a one year low of $75.71 and a one year high of $102.82. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $94.41 and its 200-day moving average price is $92.75. The company has a market cap of $31.86 billion, a P/E ratio of 95.04 and a beta of 0.34.
Crown Castle International Corp. (NYSE:CCI) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 21st. The real estate investment trust reported $1.16 EPS for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $1.16. Crown Castle International Corp. had a return on equity of 4.84% and a net margin of 9.78%. The business earned $962.40 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $948.85 million. On average, analysts forecast that Crown Castle International Corp. will post $4.68 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 30th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 16th will be given a dividend of $0.885 per share. This represents a $3.54 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.75%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 14th. Crown Castle International Corp.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 354.00%.
In related news, Director Robert F. Mckenzie sold 1,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $93.07, for a total transaction of $93,070.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 28,741 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,674,924.87. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, Vice Chairman W Benjamin Moreland sold 50,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $98.23, for a total value of $4,911,500.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 533,972 shares in the company, valued at approximately $52,452,069.56. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.73% of the company’s stock.
Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in CCI. Winslow Capital Management LLC bought a new position in Crown Castle International Corp. during the second quarter worth about $315,023,000. Capital World Investors raised its position in Crown Castle International Corp. by 9.1% in the second quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 16,967,230 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $1,720,986,000 after buying an additional 1,415,745 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC raised its position in Crown Castle International Corp. by 167.7% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 2,074,903 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $179,479,000 after buying an additional 1,299,800 shares in the last quarter. Waddell & Reed Financial Inc. raised its position in Crown Castle International Corp. by 98.8% in the second quarter. Waddell & Reed Financial Inc. now owns 2,293,303 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $232,609,000 after buying an additional 1,139,629 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Lasalle Investment Management Securities LLC bought a new position in Crown Castle International Corp. during the second quarter worth about $104,718,000. 96.88% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
About Crown Castle International Corp.
Castle International Corp. (CCIC) is a real estate investment trust (REIT) company. The Company owns, operates and leases shared wireless infrastructure, including towers and other structures, such as rooftops (towers), and to a lesser extent, distributed antenna systems (DAS), a type of small cell network (small cells), and interests in land under third party towers in various forms (third party land interests).
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