Accenture PLC (ACN) Stock Rating Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Accenture PLC (NYSE:ACN) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Thursday. The brokerage presently has a $151.00 price target on the information technology services provider’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target suggests a potential upside of 11.56% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Accenture offers management consultancy, technology and outsourcing services. Shares of the company have outperformed the industry over the past year. We are positive about Accenture’s latest product additions in the analytics application space, given the increasing demand for digital solutions. Moreover, Accenture’s strategy of growing through partnerships like Apple and acquisitions like VERAX are encouraging. The strategies have enabled Accenture to enter new markets, diversify and broaden its product portfolio, and maintain its leading position. Nonetheless, Accenture’s recent announcement of creating 15K new jobs by 2020 and investment plan of $1.4 billion for employee training and opening of 10 innovation centers across the U.S. cities may dent its bottom-line results in our opinion. Furthermore, increasing competition from peers and an uncertain macroeconomic environment may deter its growth to some extent.”

Several other equities analysts have also recently weighed in on the company. Bank of America Corporation assumed coverage on Accenture PLC in a report on Tuesday. They set a “buy” rating and a $150.00 price target for the company. Stifel Nicolaus raised their price target on Accenture PLC from $138.00 to $146.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, September 7th. BidaskClub cut Accenture PLC from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, July 28th. Cowen and Company restated a “buy” rating and set a $135.00 price target on shares of Accenture PLC in a report on Friday, July 28th. Finally, Berenberg Bank set a $140.00 price target on Accenture PLC and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Saturday, June 24th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating, sixteen have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $132.59.

Shares of Accenture PLC (NYSE:ACN) opened at 135.35 on Thursday. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $130.42 and a 200-day moving average price of $124.76. The company has a market cap of $83.64 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.97 and a beta of 1.11. Accenture PLC has a 52-week low of $109.50 and a 52-week high of $136.95.

Accenture PLC (NYSE:ACN) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, June 22nd. The information technology services provider reported $1.52 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $1.52. The business had revenue of $8.87 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $8.82 billion. Accenture PLC had a return on equity of 43.96% and a net margin of 9.92%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $1.41 EPS. On average, equities analysts predict that Accenture PLC will post $5.90 EPS for the current year.

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In other Accenture PLC news, General Counsel Chad T. Jerdee sold 3,200 shares of Accenture PLC stock in a transaction on Monday, June 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $122.97, for a total transaction of $393,504.00. Following the completion of the sale, the general counsel now directly owns 18,566 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,283,061.02. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Richard Lumb sold 2,200 shares of Accenture PLC stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $127.51, for a total value of $280,522.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 119,942 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $15,293,804.42. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 79,817 shares of company stock valued at $9,920,929 over the last three months. 0.21% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Intl Fcstone Inc. bought a new stake in Accenture PLC during the 2nd quarter valued at $1,876,000. Toronto Dominion Bank raised its position in Accenture PLC by 25.0% during the 2nd quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 210,091 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock valued at $25,979,000 after purchasing an additional 42,063 shares in the last quarter. Rikoon Group LLC bought a new stake in Accenture PLC during the 2nd quarter valued at $521,000. Cetera Investment Advisers raised its position in Accenture PLC by 5.2% during the 2nd quarter. Cetera Investment Advisers now owns 4,558 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock valued at $562,000 after purchasing an additional 226 shares in the last quarter. Finally, EP Wealth Advisors LLC raised its position in Accenture PLC by 7.7% during the 2nd quarter. EP Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 80,600 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock valued at $9,969,000 after purchasing an additional 5,763 shares in the last quarter. 77.80% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Accenture PLC

Accenture plc is a professional services company serving clients in various industries and in geographic regions, including North America, Europe and Growth Markets. The Company provides management and technology consulting services. Its segments include Communications, Media and Technology; Financial Services; Health and Public Service; Products, and Resources.

Analyst Recommendations for Accenture PLC (NYSE:ACN)

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