Estee Lauder Companies (EL) Lifted to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

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Estee Lauder Companies (NYSE:EL) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued on Thursday. The firm presently has a $141.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective would indicate a potential upside of 12.40% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Estee Lauder has outdone the industry in the past three months, owing to solid focus on buyouts, travel retail network, effective launches and strong online sales. These factors helped the company retain its robust record in first-quarter fiscal 2019, wherein earnings and sales grew year over year and beat estimates for the 17th and seventh straight time, respectively. While earnings gained from robust sales and the Leading Beauty Forward initiative, revenues were fueled by strength across most regions, brands and product categories. Further, the company gained from solid travel retail and online sales growth, which are major long-term drivers. Management expects continued opportunities in the global prestige beauty industry, and hence raised its outlook. However, a tough macroeconomic landscape owing to various store closures, tariff impacts and Brexit related concerns pose hurdles. Also, currency woes are likely to hit sales growth by 2%.”

Several other equities research analysts have also recently commented on the stock. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $152.00 price target on shares of Estee Lauder Companies and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, October 22nd. Stifel Nicolaus lowered their price target on shares of Estee Lauder Companies from $150.00 to $145.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, October 15th. Citigroup upgraded shares of Estee Lauder Companies from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $145.00 to $155.00 in a research report on Wednesday, January 2nd. Jefferies Financial Group set a $131.00 price target on shares of Estee Lauder Companies and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, December 14th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co cut shares of Estee Lauder Companies from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and lowered their price target for the stock from $165.00 to $135.00 in a research report on Thursday, January 10th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and eighteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $149.22.

EL traded down $1.45 during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $125.44. The company had a trading volume of 16,287 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,938,318. The company has a current ratio of 1.75, a quick ratio of 1.28 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.76. The stock has a market capitalization of $45.63 billion, a PE ratio of 27.81, a PEG ratio of 2.14 and a beta of 0.71. Estee Lauder Companies has a twelve month low of $121.47 and a twelve month high of $158.80.

Estee Lauder Companies (NYSE:EL) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 31st. The company reported $1.41 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.22 by $0.19. The firm had revenue of $3.52 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.48 billion. Estee Lauder Companies had a net margin of 8.48% and a return on equity of 38.29%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 7.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.21 EPS. On average, research analysts predict that Estee Lauder Companies will post 4.84 EPS for the current year.

In other Estee Lauder Companies news, EVP Michael O’hare sold 3,575 shares of Estee Lauder Companies stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, November 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $140.58, for a total value of $502,573.50. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 7,645 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,074,734.10. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, VP Sara E. Moss sold 11,404 shares of Estee Lauder Companies stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $141.89, for a total transaction of $1,618,113.56. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 315,510 shares of company stock worth $44,856,835. Insiders own 16.13% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Sumitomo Life Insurance Co. raised its holdings in shares of Estee Lauder Companies by 18.5% in the fourth quarter. Sumitomo Life Insurance Co. now owns 15,137 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,969,000 after purchasing an additional 2,367 shares during the last quarter. Dowling & Yahnke LLC raised its holdings in shares of Estee Lauder Companies by 5.4% in the fourth quarter. Dowling & Yahnke LLC now owns 10,260 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,464,000 after purchasing an additional 530 shares during the last quarter. Summit Securities Group LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Estee Lauder Companies in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $351,000. IFM Investors Pty Ltd raised its holdings in shares of Estee Lauder Companies by 9.7% in the fourth quarter. IFM Investors Pty Ltd now owns 12,991 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,690,000 after purchasing an additional 1,154 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Assenagon Asset Management S.A. raised its holdings in shares of Estee Lauder Companies by 118.3% in the fourth quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. now owns 32,864 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,276,000 after purchasing an additional 17,810 shares during the last quarter. 54.52% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Estee Lauder Companies

The Estée Lauder Companies Inc manufactures and markets skin care, makeup, fragrance, and hair care products. The company offers a range of skin care products, such as moisturizers, serums, cleansers, toners, body care products, exfoliators, acne care products, facial masks, cleansing devices, and sun care products; and makeup products, including lipsticks, lip glosses, mascaras, foundations, eyeshadows, nail polishes, and powders, as well as related items, including compacts, brushes, and other makeup tools.

Further Reading: Fundamental Analysis

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