Penn National Gaming (PENN) Lifted to “Strong-Buy” at Zacks Investment Research

Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday. The brokerage presently has a $37.00 price target on the stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective points to a potential upside of 14.73% from the stock’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Penn National, which have outperformed the industry in the past year, should continue to grow after the company posted better-than-expected earnings results in the second quarter of 2018. The company’s initiatives — involving both revenue-boosting and cost saving initiatives — are expected to reap recurring benefits over the years. Through ongoing refinements in procurement, marketing and labor management, it has reported margin growth in the second quarter of 2018. Further, the acquisition of Pinnacle is also expected to provide Penn National with significant synergies in the future. Earnings estimates for the current year have also inched up over the past 60 days, reflecting analysts’ optimism. However, a competitive operating environment and weather-related concerns are potential headwinds for the company.”

A number of other equities analysts also recently issued reports on the stock. BidaskClub raised shares of Penn National Gaming from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, August 18th. Jefferies Financial Group set a $40.00 price objective on shares of Penn National Gaming and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, July 27th. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Penn National Gaming from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, July 26th. UBS Group downgraded shares of Penn National Gaming from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, July 26th. Finally, Bank of America raised their price objective on shares of Penn National Gaming from $36.50 to $38.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 17th. Six analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eight have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $36.45.

PENN opened at $32.25 on Tuesday. The company has a current ratio of 0.63, a quick ratio of 0.63 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 162.63. The company has a market capitalization of $2.94 billion, a P/E ratio of 3.59, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.82 and a beta of 1.60. Penn National Gaming has a 12-month low of $22.74 and a 12-month high of $36.90.

Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 26th. The company reported $0.57 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.49 by $0.08. The company had revenue of $826.91 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $840.15 million. Penn National Gaming had a net margin of 18.02% and a return on equity of 268.43%. The firm’s revenue was up 3.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.18 earnings per share. equities research analysts predict that Penn National Gaming will post 1.75 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Penn National Gaming news, CEO Timothy J. Wilmott sold 17,536 shares of Penn National Gaming stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $35.05, for a total transaction of $614,636.80. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 530,403 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $18,590,625.15. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Timothy J. Wilmott sold 94,013 shares of Penn National Gaming stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.43, for a total transaction of $3,424,893.59. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 513,967 shares in the company, valued at approximately $18,723,817.81. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 193,134 shares of company stock worth $6,909,612 in the last ninety days. Insiders own 10.56% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Glenmede Trust Co. NA lifted its holdings in shares of Penn National Gaming by 12,755.2% in the second quarter. Glenmede Trust Co. NA now owns 1,103,877 shares of the company’s stock worth $37,079,000 after buying an additional 1,095,290 shares in the last quarter. Millennium Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Penn National Gaming by 64.9% in the first quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 2,337,500 shares of the company’s stock worth $61,383,000 after buying an additional 920,184 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its holdings in shares of Penn National Gaming by 47.7% in the second quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 2,547,091 shares of the company’s stock worth $85,557,000 after buying an additional 823,049 shares in the last quarter. Hood River Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Penn National Gaming by 149,643.6% in the second quarter. Hood River Capital Management LLC now owns 730,749 shares of the company’s stock worth $24,546,000 after buying an additional 730,261 shares in the last quarter. Finally, OppenheimerFunds Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Penn National Gaming by 839.4% in the first quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 660,128 shares of the company’s stock worth $17,335,000 after buying an additional 589,858 shares in the last quarter. 98.95% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Penn National Gaming Company Profile

Penn National Gaming, Inc owns and manages gaming and racing facilities, and operates video gaming terminals with a focus on slot machine entertainment. The company operates through Northeast, South/West, and Midwest segments. As of December 31, 2017, it operated 27 facilities in 17 jurisdictions, including California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, West Virginia, and Ontario, Canada.

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