Monster Beverage (MNST) Upgraded by SunTrust Banks to “Buy”

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SunTrust Banks upgraded shares of Monster Beverage (NASDAQ:MNST) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report released on Tuesday morning, MarketBeat reports. The brokerage currently has $65.00 price target on the stock, up from their prior price target of $50.00. SunTrust Banks also issued estimates for Monster Beverage’s Q4 2018 earnings at $0.38 EPS, Q1 2019 earnings at $0.44 EPS, Q2 2019 earnings at $0.58 EPS, Q3 2019 earnings at $0.57 EPS, Q4 2019 earnings at $0.46 EPS, FY2019 earnings at $2.05 EPS and FY2020 earnings at $2.32 EPS.

Several other research analysts have also recently issued reports on MNST. Guggenheim started coverage on shares of Monster Beverage in a report on Thursday, September 13th. They issued a buy rating and a $72.00 target price for the company. Stifel Nicolaus upped their target price on shares of Monster Beverage from $65.00 to $66.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, September 18th. BidaskClub cut shares of Monster Beverage from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Friday, October 5th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Monster Beverage from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Monday, October 15th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. decreased their price target on shares of Monster Beverage from $64.00 to $58.00 and set a hold rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, October 24th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating, ten have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $62.27.

Shares of NASDAQ:MNST traded up $0.76 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $54.02. The stock had a trading volume of 263,425 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,453,426. Monster Beverage has a 1 year low of $47.61 and a 1 year high of $70.21. The company has a market cap of $29.49 billion, a PE ratio of 36.99, a P/E/G ratio of 1.67 and a beta of 1.45.

Monster Beverage (NASDAQ:MNST) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, November 7th. The company reported $0.50 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.46 by $0.04. Monster Beverage had a net margin of 25.86% and a return on equity of 25.47%. The company had revenue of $1.02 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $988.73 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.40 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 11.7% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, research analysts expect that Monster Beverage will post 1.77 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other news, Director Harold C. Taber, Jr. sold 9,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, December 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.55, for a total value of $490,950.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 77,238 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,213,332.90. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, EVP Thomas J. Kelly sold 14,661 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, December 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.73, for a total transaction of $787,735.53. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 24,312 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,306,283.76. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 9.70% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its holdings in Monster Beverage by 2.2% during the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 955,086 shares of the company’s stock worth $54,724,000 after buying an additional 20,285 shares during the last quarter. Federated Investors Inc. PA boosted its holdings in Monster Beverage by 55.2% during the second quarter. Federated Investors Inc. PA now owns 21,536 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,234,000 after buying an additional 7,659 shares during the last quarter. BlueMountain Capital Management LLC bought a new position in Monster Beverage during the second quarter worth about $1,297,000. Caisse DE Depot ET Placement DU Quebec raised its position in shares of Monster Beverage by 199.1% during the second quarter. Caisse DE Depot ET Placement DU Quebec now owns 37,043 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,123,000 after purchasing an additional 24,660 shares during the period. Finally, BB&T Securities LLC raised its position in shares of Monster Beverage by 24.9% during the second quarter. BB&T Securities LLC now owns 96,900 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,551,000 after purchasing an additional 19,322 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 64.15% of the company’s stock.

Monster Beverage Company Profile

Monster Beverage Corporation, through its subsidiaries, develops, markets, sells, and distributes energy drink beverages, soda, and its concentrates in the United States and internationally. It operates through three segments: Monster Energy Drinks, Strategic Brands, and Other. The company offers ready-to-drink packaged drinks, non-carbonated dairy based coffee and energy drinks, and non-carbonated energy shakes primarily to bottlers and full service beverage distributors, as well as sells directly to retail grocery and specialty chains, wholesalers, club stores, drug stores, mass merchandisers, convenience chains, food service customers, and the military; and concentrates and/or beverage bases to authorized bottling and canning operations; and ready-to-drink packaged energy drinks to bottlers and full service beverage distributors.

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Analyst Recommendations for Monster Beverage (NASDAQ:MNST)

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