Grand Canyon Education (NASDAQ:LOPE) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research to “Hold”

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Grand Canyon Education (NASDAQ:LOPE) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note released on Wednesday morning, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Grand Canyon Education, Inc. is a regionally accredited provider of online postsecondary education services focused on offering graduate and undergraduate degree programs in its core disciplines of education, business, and healthcare. In addition to its online programs, it offers programs at its traditional campus in Phoenix, Arizona and onsite at the facilities of employers. “

LOPE has been the topic of a number of other research reports. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Zosano Pharma from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 1st. Barrington Research set a $22.00 target price on shares of The Hackett Group and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 8th. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded shares of Zynerba Pharmaceuticals from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 26th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $131.00.

Shares of NASDAQ LOPE traded up $1.11 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $117.57. The stock had a trading volume of 174,873 shares, compared to its average volume of 340,418. The company has a market cap of $5.67 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.10, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.41 and a beta of 0.82. Grand Canyon Education has a twelve month low of $90.67 and a twelve month high of $130.10. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.17, a quick ratio of 1.57 and a current ratio of 1.57. The firm has a 50 day simple moving average of $120.41.

Grand Canyon Education (NASDAQ:LOPE) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, May 7th. The company reported $1.62 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.49 by $0.13. Grand Canyon Education had a net margin of 29.80% and a return on equity of 21.50%. The company had revenue of $197.29 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $195.60 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.52 EPS. Grand Canyon Education’s quarterly revenue was down 28.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts expect that Grand Canyon Education will post 5.24 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Grand Canyon Education news, CEO Brian E. Mueller sold 40,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, June 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $126.10, for a total transaction of $5,044,000.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 320,124 shares in the company, valued at $40,367,636.40. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, insider Joseph N. Mildenhall sold 19,900 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, May 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $113.95, for a total transaction of $2,267,605.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 84,709 shares in the company, valued at approximately $9,652,590.55. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 85,900 shares of company stock worth $10,545,445. Corporate insiders own 2.00% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Westpac Banking Corp raised its holdings in Grand Canyon Education by 9.8% during the first quarter. Westpac Banking Corp now owns 51,592 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,908,000 after buying an additional 4,600 shares during the last quarter. Washington Capital Management Inc. raised its holdings in Grand Canyon Education by 46.0% during the first quarter. Washington Capital Management Inc. now owns 4,600 shares of the company’s stock worth $527,000 after buying an additional 1,450 shares during the last quarter. Summit Creek Advisors LLC raised its holdings in Grand Canyon Education by 24.3% during the first quarter. Summit Creek Advisors LLC now owns 200,492 shares of the company’s stock worth $22,958,000 after buying an additional 39,162 shares during the last quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can grew its stake in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 8.7% in the 4th quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 5,764 shares of the company’s stock worth $533,000 after acquiring an additional 461 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc grew its stake in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 15.8% in the 4th quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 29,106 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,798,000 after acquiring an additional 3,973 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 96.16% of the company’s stock.

About Grand Canyon Education

Grand Canyon Education, Inc provides education services in the United States. It offers technology and academic, counseling and support, and marketing and communication services, as well as back office services, such as financial aid processing, accounting, reporting, tax, human resources, and procurement services to the Grand Canyon University.

Further Reading: Hedge Funds

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