Meritage Corporation (NYSE:MTH) Trading 6.9% Higher Following Better-Than-Expected Earnings

Shares of Meritage Corporation (NYSE:MTH) were up 6.9% on Tuesday after the company announced better than expected quarterly earnings. The company traded as high as $44.00 and last traded at $43.55, with a volume of 629,361 shares trading hands. The stock had previously closed at $40.75.

The construction company reported $0.98 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.75 by $0.23. Meritage Corporation had a net margin of 4.94% and a return on equity of 10.74%. The firm had revenue of $802 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $760.39 million. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.95 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up .5% on a year-over-year basis.

A number of research firms have weighed in on MTH. Deutsche Bank AG upped their price objective on shares of Meritage Corporation from $40.00 to $42.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Barclays PLC reaffirmed an “underweight” rating and set a $38.00 price target (up previously from $36.00) on shares of Meritage Corporation in a research report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Bank of America Corporation reaffirmed an “underperform” rating and set a $38.00 price target (up previously from $36.00) on shares of Meritage Corporation in a research report on Wednesday, June 28th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Meritage Corporation from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 28th. Finally, BidaskClub lowered shares of Meritage Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 13th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $41.13.

In related news, EVP Javier Feliciano sold 1,009 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $35.55, for a total transaction of $35,869.95. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, EVP C Timothy White sold 7,500 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $41.36, for a total transaction of $310,200.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 5.60% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. BlackRock Inc. raised its stake in shares of Meritage Corporation by 53,081.0% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 5,361,172 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $197,292,000 after buying an additional 5,351,091 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in Meritage Corporation by 1.1% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 3,334,402 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $140,712,000 after buying an additional 37,025 shares during the period. Fisher Asset Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Meritage Corporation by 0.7% in the second quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 1,719,947 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $72,582,000 after buying an additional 12,375 shares in the last quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. boosted its position in shares of Meritage Corporation by 12.1% in the first quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 1,552,594 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $57,135,000 after buying an additional 167,725 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Earnest Partners LLC boosted its position in Meritage Corporation by 9.1% in the first quarter. Earnest Partners LLC now owns 1,386,256 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $51,014,000 after buying an additional 115,181 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 97.13% of the company’s stock.

The company has a 50-day moving average of $42.23 and a 200 day moving average of $38.92. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.72 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.72 and a beta of 1.47.

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Meritage Corporation Company Profile

Meritage Homes Corporation operates as a holding company. The Company is a designer and builder of single-family homes. The Company operates through two segments: homebuilding and financial services. The homebuilding segment is engaged in the business of acquiring and developing land, constructing homes, marketing and selling those homes, and providing warranty and customer services.

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