Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Zynga (ZNGA) to Hold

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Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Zynga Inc. is the world’s largest social game developer with users playing their games which include CityVille, FarmVille, FrontierVille, Words With Friends, Mafia Wars, Zynga Poker, Cafe World, and Treasure Isle. Zynga Inc. games are available on a number of global platforms including Facebook, MySpace, Yahoo, the iPad, the iPhone and Android devices. They operate their games as live services, by which they mean that they continue to support and update games after launch and gather daily, metrics-based player feedback that enable them to continually enhance their games by adding new content and features. All of their games are free to play, and they generate revenue through the in-game sale of virtual goods and advertising. “

Other equities research analysts also recently issued research reports about the company. ValuEngine upgraded Zynga from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Wednesday, October 3rd. Stifel Nicolaus started coverage on Zynga in a research report on Thursday, September 27th. They issued a buy rating and a $5.00 price objective on the stock. Wedbush set a $6.00 price objective on Zynga and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, August 2nd. Jefferies Financial Group reissued a buy rating and issued a $5.25 price objective on shares of Zynga in a research report on Thursday, October 11th. Finally, BidaskClub raised Zynga from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Friday, October 5th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $4.82.

Zynga stock traded down $0.18 during trading on Tuesday, hitting $3.61. 16,997,800 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 14,570,886. Zynga has a 52 week low of $3.20 and a 52 week high of $4.57. The company has a market capitalization of $3.35 billion, a P/E ratio of 129.67, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.80 and a beta of 0.42.

Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 31st. The company reported $0.05 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.04 by $0.01. Zynga had a return on equity of 1.89% and a net margin of 3.12%. The business had revenue of $233.24 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $224.54 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.02 earnings per share. Zynga’s revenue was up 3.8% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Zynga will post 0.1 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Zynga news, Director Ellen F. Siminoff sold 12,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $3.92, for a total value of $47,040.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 213,277 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $836,045.84. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, COO Matthew S. Bromberg sold 41,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $4.12, for a total value of $170,980.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 485,294 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,999,411.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 576,322 shares of company stock worth $2,177,796. Insiders own 11.87% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of ZNGA. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board lifted its position in shares of Zynga by 68.5% during the 3rd quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 3,307,520 shares of the company’s stock valued at $13,263,000 after buying an additional 1,344,620 shares during the last quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale lifted its position in shares of Zynga by 179.9% during the 3rd quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale now owns 24,635 shares of the company’s stock valued at $103,000 after buying an additional 15,835 shares during the last quarter. Blue Sky Asset Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Zynga during the 3rd quarter valued at $198,000. BlackRock Inc. lifted its position in shares of Zynga by 19.0% during the 3rd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 72,114,183 shares of the company’s stock valued at $289,178,000 after buying an additional 11,520,469 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Iridian Asset Management LLC CT purchased a new position in shares of Zynga during the 3rd quarter valued at $153,074,000. 74.60% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Zynga Company Profile

Zynga Inc develops, markets, and operates social games as live services in the United States and internationally. The company's games are played on mobile platforms, such as iOS and Android operating systems, as well as on social networking sites, including Facebook. It also provides advertising services comprising mobile and display ads, engagement ads and offers, and branded virtual goods and sponsorships to advertising agencies and brokers; and software licensing and maintenance services related to NaturalMotion technology, as well as licenses its own brands.

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