Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Equinix, Inc. (EQIX) to Hold

Equinix, Inc. (NASDAQ:EQIX) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “The global data center operator, Equinix's shares has outperformed the broader market over the last one year. Equinix remains positive on the growing demand for data centers. To meet the growing demand for cloud services, the global interconnection and data center company is expanding its IBX data centers globally and gaining popularity among tech companies looking for data management. Notably, the company strives to enhance customer experience through the Equinix Customer One program. Moreover, Equinix’s recurring revenue model and current expansion plans are encouraging. However, we are concerned about the company’s growing debt burden, which will adversely affect the operating results as interest expense would go up. Additionally, intensifying competition and industry consolidation remain other near-term headwinds.”

Other analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. Cowen and Company boosted their price objective on shares of Equinix from $417.00 to $453.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, March 29th. Canaccord Genuity reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $420.00 price objective on shares of Equinix in a report on Thursday, February 16th. Stifel Nicolaus boosted their price objective on shares of Equinix from $418.00 to $435.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, February 16th. Finally, Citigroup Inc raised shares of Equinix from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price objective for the company from $408.00 to $435.00 in a report on Monday, March 13th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $419.69.

Analyst Recommendations for Equinix (NASDAQ:EQIX)

Shares of Equinix (NASDAQ:EQIX) traded down 0.53% during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $402.99. The stock had a trading volume of 92,799 shares. The firm has a market capitalization of $28.87 billion, a PE ratio of 224.51 and a beta of 0.73. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $389.46 and its 200-day moving average price is $367.99. Equinix has a 1-year low of $314.55 and a 1-year high of $407.55.

Equinix (NASDAQ:EQIX) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, February 15th. The financial services provider reported $0.86 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $3.41 by $2.55. The business earned $942.65 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $942.15 million. Equinix had a net margin of 2.23% and a return on equity of 3.68%. Equities analysts predict that Equinix will post $4.77 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, March 22nd. Investors of record on Monday, February 27th were paid a $2.00 dividend. This is an increase from Equinix’s previous quarterly dividend of $1.75. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, February 23rd. This represents a $8.00 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.97%. Equinix’s dividend payout ratio is presently 648.15%.

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In related news, CEO Stephen M. Smith sold 7,839 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, February 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $376.00, for a total value of $2,947,464.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CFO Keith D. Taylor sold 1,956 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $370.31, for a total transaction of $724,326.36. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now directly owns 43,352 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $16,053,679.12. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 50,034 shares of company stock valued at $19,043,639. 0.69% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Creative Planning boosted its position in shares of Equinix by 95.0% in the third quarter. Creative Planning now owns 351 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $126,000 after buying an additional 171 shares during the period. Solaris Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Equinix during the third quarter valued at about $155,000. Muzinich & Co. Inc. boosted its position in shares of Equinix by 32.3% in the third quarter. Muzinich & Co. Inc. now owns 446 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $161,000 after buying an additional 109 shares during the period. Global X Management Co. LLC boosted its position in shares of Equinix by 181.1% in the third quarter. Global X Management Co. LLC now owns 520 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $187,000 after buying an additional 335 shares during the period. Finally, Compagnie Lombard Odier SCmA boosted its position in shares of Equinix by 23.6% in the third quarter. Compagnie Lombard Odier SCmA now owns 545 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $196,000 after buying an additional 104 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 98.12% of the company’s stock.

About Equinix

Equinix, Inc (Equinix) connects businesses with partners and customers worldwide through a global platform of data centers. The Company connects approximately 4000 customers, across the Americas, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and Asia-Pacific. Platform Equinix combines international business exchange (IBX) data centers, a global footprint and ecosystems.

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