BJ’s Restaurants (BJRI) Stock Price Up 1.2% Following Analyst Upgrade

BJ’s Restaurants (NASDAQ:BJRI) shares rose 1.2% during trading on Monday after Morgan Stanley raised their price target on the stock from $38.00 to $41.00. Morgan Stanley currently has an equal weight rating on the stock. BJ’s Restaurants traded as high as $49.60 and last traded at $49.32. Approximately 164,050 shares were traded during mid-day trading, a decline of 58% from the average daily volume of 389,196 shares. The stock had previously closed at $48.75.

A number of other research analysts have also recently commented on the stock. Barclays restated an “underweight” rating and issued a $30.00 price target (up from $27.00) on shares of BJ’s Restaurants in a report on Tuesday, January 16th. Stifel Nicolaus upgraded shares of BJ’s Restaurants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $32.00 to $44.00 in a report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of BJ’s Restaurants from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, December 29th. Canaccord Genuity restated a “buy” rating and issued a $50.00 price target (up from $45.00) on shares of BJ’s Restaurants in a report on Friday, February 23rd. Finally, Wedbush upgraded shares of BJ’s Restaurants from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $37.00 to $44.00 in a report on Thursday, February 15th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $41.33.

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In related news, insider Brian S. Krakower sold 5,504 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $44.21, for a total value of $243,331.84. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 3,318 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $146,688.78. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Director Gerald W. Deitchle sold 161,703 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, March 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.55, for a total transaction of $7,042,165.65. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 80,548 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,507,865.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders sold 170,867 shares of company stock valued at $7,447,599. 6.80% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Segall Bryant & Hamill LLC lifted its stake in BJ’s Restaurants by 9.3% in the fourth quarter. Segall Bryant & Hamill LLC now owns 103,643 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $3,773,000 after acquiring an additional 8,825 shares during the period. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of BJ’s Restaurants during the fourth quarter valued at about $331,000. Gotham Asset Management LLC lifted its position in shares of BJ’s Restaurants by 74.9% during the fourth quarter. Gotham Asset Management LLC now owns 26,406 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $961,000 after buying an additional 11,307 shares during the last quarter. MainStreet Investment Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of BJ’s Restaurants during the fourth quarter valued at about $1,405,000. Finally, Jane Street Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of BJ’s Restaurants during the fourth quarter valued at about $569,000. 94.61% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

The stock has a market cap of $999.58, a P/E ratio of 34.93, a PEG ratio of 1.77 and a beta of 0.74. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.63, a quick ratio of 0.41 and a current ratio of 0.49.

BJ’s Restaurants (NASDAQ:BJRI) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 22nd. The restaurant operator reported $0.37 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.32 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $261.10 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $259.34 million. BJ’s Restaurants had a net margin of 4.34% and a return on equity of 12.07%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 1.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.52 earnings per share. analysts anticipate that BJ’s Restaurants will post 1.8 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, March 27th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, March 13th were given a dividend of $0.11 per share. This represents a $0.44 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.89%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, March 12th. BJ’s Restaurants’s payout ratio is 15.60%.

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About BJ’s Restaurants

BJ's Restaurants, Inc owns and operates casual dining restaurants in the United States. Its restaurants offer pizzas, craft and other beers, appetizers, entrées, pastas, sandwiches, specialty salads, and desserts. As of February 26, 2018, the company owned and operated 197 casual dining restaurants located in the 26 states of Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Washington.

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