Investors Buy High Volume of Francesca’s Put Options (FRAN)

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Francesca’s Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:FRAN) was the recipient of unusually large options trading activity on Thursday. Stock investors purchased 4,319 put options on the company. This represents an increase of approximately 6,346% compared to the typical daily volume of 67 put options.

FRAN has been the topic of a number of recent analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Francesca’s from a “buy” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, August 20th. B. Riley upgraded shares of Francesca’s from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price target for the stock from $7.00 to $8.00 in a research report on Monday, June 18th. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Francesca’s from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 12th. TheStreet upgraded shares of Francesca’s from a “d+” rating to a “c-” rating in a research report on Friday, June 1st. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of Francesca’s from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Saturday, June 2nd. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. Francesca’s has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $7.33.

Francesca’s stock opened at $6.15 on Friday. Francesca’s has a 12-month low of $4.51 and a 12-month high of $8.48. The firm has a market cap of $231.91 million, a P/E ratio of 11.83 and a beta of 0.04.

Francesca’s (NASDAQ:FRAN) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, June 5th. The specialty retailer reported ($0.11) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.11). Francesca’s had a net margin of 1.58% and a return on equity of 9.35%. The company had revenue of $100.40 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $101.48 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.12 EPS. Francesca’s’s quarterly revenue was down 6.8% compared to the same quarter last year. research analysts expect that Francesca’s will post 0.56 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Isthmus Partners LLC raised its holdings in Francesca’s by 12.0% during the second quarter. Isthmus Partners LLC now owns 60,359 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $456,000 after buying an additional 6,446 shares during the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. raised its holdings in Francesca’s by 4.3% during the second quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 178,482 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $1,348,000 after buying an additional 7,320 shares during the last quarter. Exencial Wealth Advisors LLC raised its holdings in Francesca’s by 58.3% during the second quarter. Exencial Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 21,339 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $161,000 after buying an additional 7,855 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp raised its holdings in Francesca’s by 2.2% during the first quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 461,240 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $2,214,000 after buying an additional 10,052 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. grew its stake in shares of Francesca’s by 7.4% in the 1st quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 183,376 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $881,000 after acquiring an additional 12,567 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 98.40% of the company’s stock.

About Francesca’s

Francesca's Holdings Corporation, through its subsidiaries, operates a chain of retail boutiques. It offers fashion apparel, jewelry, accessories, and gifts primarily for women between the ages of 18 and 35. The company's apparel products comprise dresses, fashion tops, sweaters, cardigans and wraps, bottoms, outerwear and jackets, tees and tanks, and intimates; and jewelry includes necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and rings.

Further Reading: Return on Investment (ROI)

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