World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Rating Increased to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

World Wrestling Entertainment (NYSE:WWE) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued on Monday. The brokerage presently has a $88.00 price target on the stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target would suggest a potential upside of 9.51% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “WWE’s focus on increasing original content, subscriber growth, rise in TV rights fees and monetization of video content across digital and direct-to-consumer platforms bode well. These led the stock to outpace the industry in a year. Although revenue fell short of the consensus mark in third-quarter 2018, earnings surpassed the same after missing in the preceding quarter. Notably, both the top and bottom lines improved year over year. Management envisions significant revenue growth in the final quarter with adjusted OIBDA in the band of $45-$55 million. However, we believe that fall in ticket sales during live events, lower number of live events, rising costs at WWE Network and stiff competition from other entertainment platforms may hurt profitability. Also, the company's media segment remains vulnerable to rising capital expenditures, content cost and operating expense.”

WWE has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Wolfe Research began coverage on World Wrestling Entertainment in a research note on Friday, December 7th. They issued an “outperform” rating for the company. Citigroup lowered their price objective on World Wrestling Entertainment from $85.00 to $80.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, October 29th. Cannonball Research raised World Wrestling Entertainment to a “buy” rating and set a $95.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Thursday, October 11th. Loop Capital began coverage on World Wrestling Entertainment in a research report on Friday, December 21st. They set a “hold” rating and a $85.00 price objective for the company. Finally, KeyCorp reissued a “buy” rating on shares of World Wrestling Entertainment in a research report on Friday, October 26th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twelve have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $88.00.

WWE stock traded up $1.37 on Monday, reaching $80.36. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 430,421 shares, compared to its average volume of 979,305. World Wrestling Entertainment has a 12-month low of $31.62 and a 12-month high of $97.69. The firm has a market capitalization of $6.16 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 123.63 and a beta of 0.98. The company has a quick ratio of 1.23, a current ratio of 1.26 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.10.

World Wrestling Entertainment (NYSE:WWE) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 25th. The company reported $0.37 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.19 by $0.18. World Wrestling Entertainment had a return on equity of 27.69% and a net margin of 7.27%. The company had revenue of $188.40 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $203.08 million. Equities research analysts anticipate that World Wrestling Entertainment will post 0.93 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, insider George A. Barrios sold 37,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.99, for a total transaction of $2,437,125.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 394,407 shares in the company, valued at $25,632,510.93. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Vincent K. Mcmahon sold 306,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, November 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $74.73, for a total value of $22,867,380.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 381,000 shares of company stock valued at $27,952,380 in the last three months. Insiders own 45.10% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of WWE. Legal & General Group Plc boosted its stake in shares of World Wrestling Entertainment by 6.1% during the 2nd quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 79,449 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,830,000 after buying an additional 4,583 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in shares of World Wrestling Entertainment by 2.6% during the 2nd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 504,577 shares of the company’s stock valued at $36,745,000 after buying an additional 12,953 shares during the period. First Republic Investment Management Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of World Wrestling Entertainment during the 2nd quarter valued at $281,000. Macquarie Group Ltd. boosted its stake in shares of World Wrestling Entertainment by 86.4% during the 2nd quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 19,200 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,398,000 after buying an additional 8,900 shares during the period. Finally, Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY boosted its stake in shares of World Wrestling Entertainment by 6.9% during the 2nd quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY now owns 13,591 shares of the company’s stock valued at $990,000 after buying an additional 875 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 59.90% of the company’s stock.

World Wrestling Entertainment Company Profile

World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc, an integrated media and entertainment company, engages in the sports entertainment business in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Asia Pacific, and Latin America. The company operates through Network, Television, Home Entertainment, Digital Media, Live Events, Licensing, Venue Merchandise, WWEShop, and WWE Studios segments.

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