Zacks Investment Research Lowers Wingstop Inc. (WING) to Sell

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Wingstop Inc. (NASDAQ:WING) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report published on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Wingstop Inc. franchises and operates restaurants. The Company’s operating segment consists of Franchise segment and Company segment. It offers cooked-to-order, hand-sauced and tossed chicken wings. Wingstop Inc. is headquartered in Dallas, Texas. “

A number of other brokerages have also recently issued reports on WING. Cowen and Company restated a buy rating on shares of Wingstop in a report on Thursday, August 24th. BidaskClub raised Wingstop from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 22nd. Stifel Nicolaus began coverage on Wingstop in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. They issued a hold rating and a $35.00 target price for the company. Robert W. Baird reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $39.00 target price on shares of Wingstop in a research report on Monday, October 9th. Finally, Longbow Research began coverage on Wingstop in a research report on Friday, October 13th. They issued a neutral rating for the company. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating, six have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $34.89.

Shares of Wingstop (NASDAQ:WING) traded down 1.12% during trading on Wednesday, reaching $32.78. 251,772 shares of the company traded hands. The company has a market capitalization of $952.98 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 51.14 and a beta of 0.58. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $33.24 and its 200 day moving average is $31.33. Wingstop has a 1-year low of $24.74 and a 1-year high of $35.91.

Wingstop (NASDAQ:WING) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The restaurant operator reported $0.18 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.15 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $24.70 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $24.61 million. Wingstop had a negative return on equity of 28.04% and a net margin of 19.28%. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.15 EPS. On average, analysts forecast that Wingstop will post $0.72 EPS for the current year.

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In other news, insider Stacy Peterson sold 11,557 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.60, for a total value of $399,872.20. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Chairman Charles R. Morrison sold 25,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.71, for a total value of $867,750.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 47,083 shares of company stock valued at $1,622,033. 1.76% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Koch Industries Inc. acquired a new stake in Wingstop during the second quarter valued at $286,000. Sterling Capital Management LLC boosted its position in Wingstop by 24.8% during the second quarter. Sterling Capital Management LLC now owns 26,418 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $816,000 after purchasing an additional 5,255 shares during the last quarter. California State Teachers Retirement System boosted its position in Wingstop by 66.1% during the second quarter. California State Teachers Retirement System now owns 51,502 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $1,591,000 after purchasing an additional 20,500 shares during the last quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company boosted its position in Wingstop by 77.9% during the second quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 22,587 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $699,000 after purchasing an additional 9,892 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State Street Corp boosted its position in Wingstop by 47.7% during the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 635,514 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $19,639,000 after purchasing an additional 205,100 shares during the last quarter.

About Wingstop

Wingstop Inc is franchisor and operator of restaurants that specializes in cooked-to-order, hand-sauced and tossed chicken wings. The Company operates through two segments: Franchise and Company. As of December 31, 2016, the Company offers its guests 11 flavors on bone-in and boneless chicken wings paired with hand-cut, seasoned fries and sides.

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