Texas Permanent School Fund reduced its position in Acuity Brands Inc (NYSE:AYI) by 3.8% during the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 12,392 shares of the electronics maker’s stock after selling 491 shares during the period. Texas Permanent School Fund’s holdings in Acuity Brands were worth $2,519,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
Other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Nippon Life Insurance Co. boosted its stake in Acuity Brands by 134.5% in the first quarter. Nippon Life Insurance Co. now owns 5,402 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $1,102,000 after buying an additional 3,098 shares during the period. Retirement Systems of Alabama boosted its stake in Acuity Brands by 86.9% in the first quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 127,114 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $25,931,000 after buying an additional 59,108 shares during the period. Bright Rock Capital Management LLC boosted its stake in Acuity Brands by 33.3% in the first quarter. Bright Rock Capital Management LLC now owns 8,000 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $1,632,000 after buying an additional 2,000 shares during the period. Cim LLC boosted its stake in Acuity Brands by 9.1% in the first quarter. Cim LLC now owns 1,956 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $399,000 after buying an additional 163 shares during the period. Finally, Carderock Capital Management Inc. boosted its stake in Acuity Brands by 5.0% in the first quarter. Carderock Capital Management Inc. now owns 11,377 shares of the electronics maker’s stock worth $2,321,000 after buying an additional 537 shares during the period. 95.15% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Acuity Brands Inc (AYI) traded down 1.56% during trading on Friday, hitting $178.33. 426,940 shares of the stock traded hands. Acuity Brands Inc has a 52 week low of $157.33 and a 52 week high of $280.89. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $197.82 and its 200 day moving average is $191.84. The stock has a market cap of $7.69 billion, a P/E ratio of 24.88 and a beta of 1.41.
Acuity Brands (NYSE:AYI) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, June 29th. The electronics maker reported $2.15 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.03 by $0.12. The firm had revenue of $891.60 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $878.66 million. Acuity Brands had a return on equity of 19.89% and a net margin of 9.04%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 4.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $2.06 EPS. Equities research analysts forecast that Acuity Brands Inc will post $8.31 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, August 1st. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, July 18th were issued a dividend of $0.13 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, July 14th. This represents a $0.52 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.29%. Acuity Brands’s dividend payout ratio is currently 7.24%.
Acuity Brands declared that its board has initiated a stock buyback program on Thursday, June 29th that authorizes the company to buyback 2,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the electronics maker to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are generally a sign that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.
A number of analysts recently weighed in on the stock. JMP Securities reaffirmed an “underperform” rating and issued a $183.00 price objective (up previously from $170.00) on shares of Acuity Brands in a report on Friday, June 30th. Deutsche Bank AG increased their target price on shares of Acuity Brands from $215.00 to $245.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, June 30th. Canaccord Genuity reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $215.00 target price on shares of Acuity Brands in a research report on Friday, June 30th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Acuity Brands from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Saturday, July 1st. Finally, Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. decreased their target price on shares of Acuity Brands from $265.00 to $215.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a research report on Tuesday, July 4th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the stock. Acuity Brands currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $219.00.
In other Acuity Brands news, Director Peter C. Browning sold 970 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, July 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $200.05, for a total transaction of $194,048.50. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 1,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $200,050. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, EVP Mark A. Black sold 5,427 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $205.29, for a total value of $1,114,108.83. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.40% of the company’s stock.
About Acuity Brands
Acuity Brands, Inc is a provider of lighting solutions for commercial, institutional, industrial, infrastructure and residential applications throughout North America and other international markets. The Company operates through North American segment. The Company offers a portfolio of indoor and outdoor lighting and building management solutions for commercial, institutional, industrial, infrastructure and residential applications.
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