Benchmark Co. Reaffirms “Buy” Rating for World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE:WWE)

Benchmark Co. reissued their buy rating on shares of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE:WWE) in a research report sent to investors on Sunday, July 30th. They currently have a $25.00 price objective on the stock, down from their prior price objective of $26.00.

A number of other research firms also recently commented on WWE. BTIG Research reiterated a buy rating and issued a $25.00 price target on shares of World Wrestling Entertainment in a research note on Sunday, April 2nd. Needham & Company LLC reiterated a buy rating and issued a $25.00 price target on shares of World Wrestling Entertainment in a research note on Tuesday, April 4th. ValuEngine upgraded World Wrestling Entertainment from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Friday, June 2nd. TheStreet upgraded World Wrestling Entertainment from a c+ rating to a b- rating in a research note on Thursday, May 4th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised shares of World Wrestling Entertainment from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Thursday, July 13th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $24.38.

Shares of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) opened at 21.06 on Friday. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $20.94 and a 200 day moving average price of $20.85. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.62 billion, a P/E ratio of 64.21 and a beta of 0.82. World Wrestling Entertainment has a 12-month low of $16.77 and a 12-month high of $23.14.

World Wrestling Entertainment (NYSE:WWE) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The company reported $0.06 EPS for the quarter, hitting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.06. The business had revenue of $214.60 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $209.28 million. World Wrestling Entertainment had a return on equity of 13.07% and a net margin of 3.29%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.01 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts anticipate that World Wrestling Entertainment will post $0.46 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, September 25th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be issued a $0.12 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 14th. This represents a $0.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.28%. World Wrestling Entertainment’s dividend payout ratio is currently 154.84%.

In other news, EVP Casey Collins sold 13,383 shares of World Wrestling Entertainment stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, July 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $21.23, for a total transaction of $284,121.09. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 43,926 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $932,548.98. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, SVP Mark Kowal sold 4,750 shares of World Wrestling Entertainment stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $21.44, for a total value of $101,840.00. Following the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 17,011 shares in the company, valued at approximately $364,715.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 73,133 shares of company stock worth $1,554,711 in the last three months. 49.80% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in WWE. Lindsell Train Ltd boosted its stake in World Wrestling Entertainment by 4.2% in the second quarter. Lindsell Train Ltd now owns 7,082,868 shares of the company’s stock worth $144,278,000 after buying an additional 286,635 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in World Wrestling Entertainment by 1.4% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 4,487,555 shares of the company’s stock worth $91,410,000 after buying an additional 61,167 shares during the period. Morgan Stanley boosted its stake in World Wrestling Entertainment by 22.5% in the first quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 1,807,629 shares of the company’s stock worth $40,165,000 after buying an additional 331,584 shares during the period. Eagle Boston Investment Management Inc. boosted its stake in World Wrestling Entertainment by 100.8% in the second quarter. Eagle Boston Investment Management Inc. now owns 916,673 shares of the company’s stock worth $19,516,000 after buying an additional 460,117 shares during the period. Finally, State Street Corp boosted its stake in World Wrestling Entertainment by 9.3% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 826,608 shares of the company’s stock worth $18,368,000 after buying an additional 70,057 shares during the period. 49.79% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About World Wrestling Entertainment

World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc (WWE) is an integrated media and entertainment company. The Company’s segments are Network, Television, Home Entertainment, Digital Media, Live Events, Licensing, Venue Merchandise, WWEShop, WWE Studios, and Corporate and Other. The Company is engaged in the production and distribution of content through various channels, including its WWE Network, television rights agreements, pay-per-view event programming, live events, feature films, licensing of various WWE themed products, and the sale of consumer products featuring its brands.

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