Booking (NASDAQ:BKNG) Upgraded to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

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Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Booking (NASDAQ:BKNG) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report published on Tuesday morning, Zacks.com reports. They currently have $1,988.00 target price on the business services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Booking Holdings is riding on rising gross bookings. It continues to witness solid growth in the booked room nights. Moreover, its strong direct channel, rising mobile share and growing alternative accommodation business are aiding total room nights bookings. Further, strong efforts toward ramping up of merchant business remain positive. We believe secular growth trend in the online travel booking market and growing mobile usage penetration are tailwinds. Estimates have been stable lately ahead of the company’s Q2 earnings release. The company has mixed record of earnings surprises in recent quarters. However, sluggishness in the rental car days poses risk. Moreover, macro headwinds, increasing advertising spend and occupancy tax-related litigation remain concerns. “

Other analysts have also recently issued research reports about the company. Morgan Stanley set a $70.00 price objective on Edison International and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Monday, July 15th. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a hold rating on shares of NEXT in a research report on Monday, April 29th. Ascendiant Capital Markets set a $2,000.00 price objective on Booking and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 14th. Citigroup cut Barrick Gold to a neutral rating in a research report on Thursday, May 23rd. Finally, ValuEngine upgraded VESTAS WIND SYS/ADR from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, May 9th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have assigned a hold rating and fourteen have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $2,063.61.

Shares of BKNG stock traded up $30.28 during mid-day trading on Tuesday, hitting $1,956.41. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 37,986 shares, compared to its average volume of 279,889. Booking has a 52-week low of $1,606.27 and a 52-week high of $2,131.90. The company has a 50-day moving average of $1,858.72. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.34, a quick ratio of 1.27 and a current ratio of 1.27. The firm has a market capitalization of $83.09 billion, a PE ratio of 21.13, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.57 and a beta of 1.13.

Booking (NASDAQ:BKNG) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 9th. The business services provider reported $11.17 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $11.26 by ($0.09). Booking had a return on equity of 48.32% and a net margin of 28.79%. The business had revenue of $2.84 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.93 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $12.34 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.1% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities research analysts predict that Booking will post 100.86 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Booking news, CEO Gillian Tans sold 606 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $1,778.60, for a total value of $1,077,831.60. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Jeffrey E. Epstein sold 250 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $1,755.75, for a total value of $438,937.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 1,462 shares of company stock valued at $2,602,200. Company insiders own 0.24% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Weaver Consulting Group bought a new position in shares of Booking in the first quarter worth about $25,000. Guidant Wealth Advisors bought a new position in shares of Booking in the first quarter worth about $26,000. Truvestments Capital LLC bought a new position in shares of Booking in the first quarter worth about $44,000. Horan Capital Advisors LLC. bought a new position in shares of Booking in the first quarter worth about $49,000. Finally, Legacy Advisors LLC boosted its stake in shares of Booking by 172.7% in the second quarter. Legacy Advisors LLC now owns 30 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $56,000 after acquiring an additional 19 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 92.92% of the company’s stock.

About Booking

Booking Holdings Inc, formerly The Priceline Group Inc, is a provider of travel and restaurant online reservation and related services. The Company, through its online travel companies (OTCs), connects consumers wishing to make travel reservations with providers of travel services across the world. It offers consumers an array of accommodation reservations (including hotels, bed and breakfasts, hostels, apartments, vacation rentals and other properties) through its Booking.com, priceline.com and agoda.com brands.

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