J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding Company (NYSE:JCP) Upgraded to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding Company (NYSE:JCP) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report released on Friday, August 4th. Zacks Investment Research currently has $6.00 price objective on the department store operator’s stock.

According to Zacks, “J. C. Penney shares, which have underperformed the industry in the past six months, recently took a sharp U turn after the company informed that the sales performance has improved in the second quarter of fiscal 2017. Moreover, the company whose top line has missed the estimate in the trailing five quarters announced that it expects to post substantial improvement in sales in the second quarter in comparison with the first quarter. Further, in an effort to lure more customers and ramp up sales, management has introduced new loyalty program. These along with remodeling, renovation and refurbishment of stores with special attention on enhancing the reach of national and especially private-label brands looks promising. J. C. Penney is also gradually increasing the count of Sephora stores. However, the impact of challenging retail landscape, high debt level, stiff competition from online retailers, and waning store traffic concerns linger.”

JCP has been the topic of a number of other reports. UBS AG reissued a sell rating and set a $4.00 target price (down from $5.00) on shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding in a report on Wednesday, May 17th. B. Riley restated a neutral rating and set a $5.70 price target on shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding in a research report on Monday, May 15th. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. restated a hold rating on shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding in a research report on Saturday, May 13th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $5.00 price target on shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding and gave the stock a hold rating in a research report on Saturday, May 13th. Finally, Gordon Haskett upgraded shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding from a reduce rating to a hold rating and set a $4.50 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, June 26th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seventeen have assigned a hold rating, four have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $5.80.

Shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding (NYSE JCP) traded up 0.56% during midday trading on Friday, hitting $3.60. 28,086,805 shares of the stock were exchanged. J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding has a 12-month low of $3.45 and a 12-month high of $10.74. The firm’s market cap is $1.12 billion. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $4.82 and a 200 day moving average of $5.44.

J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding (NYSE:JCP) last posted its earnings results on Friday, August 11th. The department store operator reported ($0.09) EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.06) by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $2.96 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.84 billion. J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding had a positive return on equity of 10.55% and a negative net margin of 0.94%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted ($0.05) earnings per share. Equities analysts forecast that J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding will post $0.43 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other news, Chairman Marvin R. Ellison bought 100,000 shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 18th. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $3.48 per share, with a total value of $348,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 2,852,280 shares in the company, valued at $9,925,934.40. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 1.02% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. boosted its position in shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding by 33.6% in the first quarter. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. now owns 16,721 shares of the department store operator’s stock valued at $103,000 after buying an additional 4,205 shares during the period. Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC boosted its position in shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding by 14.5% in the first quarter. Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC now owns 17,472 shares of the department store operator’s stock valued at $108,000 after buying an additional 2,212 shares during the period. Parametrica Management Ltd purchased a new position in shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding during the first quarter valued at approximately $117,000. FNY Managed Accounts LLC purchased a new position in shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding during the first quarter valued at approximately $117,000. Finally, Janney Montgomery Scott LLC boosted its position in shares of J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding by 84.4% in the first quarter. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC now owns 19,818 shares of the department store operator’s stock valued at $122,000 after buying an additional 9,068 shares during the period. 78.87% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About J.C. Penney Company, Inc. Holding

J. C. Penney Company, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s business consists of selling merchandise and services to consumers through its department stores and its Website at jcpenney.com. Its department stores and Website generally serve the same type of customers, its Website offers virtually the same mix of merchandise as its store assortment and other categories, and its department stores generally accept returns from sales made in stores and through its Website.

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