Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc. (FOXA) Lowered to Strong Sell at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc. (NASDAQ:FOXA) from a hold rating to a strong sell rating in a research report sent to investors on Tuesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Twenty-First Century Fox have underperformed the industry in the past six months. The company’s proposed acquisition of remaining 61% stake in Sky plc hit a roadblock after U.K. Culture Secretary Karen Bradley demanded detailed review from the Competition and Markets Authority.  Meanwhile, increase in cost at Cable Network Programming is also a worry factor for investors. The rise in expenses was mostly due to elevated sports programming costs. Management anticipates costs at Cable Network to go up in fiscal 2018.  Nevertheless, Cable Network Programming, which has been a driving force backed by rising affiliate fees, is expected to do well in fiscal 2018 too. Affiliate fees are the dominant sources of revenue for the Cable Network segment.  We also observe that, of late, earnings estimates for the company have witnessed downward revisions for the first-quarter and fiscal 2018.”

A number of other research analysts have also recently weighed in on FOXA. Royal Bank Of Canada set a $33.00 target price on shares of Twenty-First Century Fox and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Monday, June 12th. BMO Capital Markets set a $36.00 target price on shares of Twenty-First Century Fox and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Friday, June 16th. Credit Suisse Group restated a buy rating and set a $37.00 target price on shares of Twenty-First Century Fox in a research note on Friday, June 30th. Morgan Stanley restated an overweight rating on shares of Twenty-First Century Fox in a research note on Thursday, July 6th. Finally, ValuEngine upgraded shares of Twenty-First Century Fox from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, July 6th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and eighteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $33.45.

Twenty-First Century Fox (FOXA) traded down 1.027% during midday trading on Tuesday, hitting $26.495. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 2,943,162 shares. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $26.81 and its 200 day moving average price is $28.23. Twenty-First Century Fox has a 12 month low of $24.22 and a 12 month high of $32.60. The firm has a market cap of $49.04 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.706 and a beta of 1.26.

Twenty-First Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, August 9th. The company reported $0.36 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.35 by $0.01. Twenty-First Century Fox had a net margin of 10.36% and a return on equity of 22.46%. The company had revenue of $6.75 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.79 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.45 EPS. Twenty-First Century Fox’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.5% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts expect that Twenty-First Century Fox will post $2.03 EPS for the current year.

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The company also recently declared a semiannual dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 18th. Investors of record on Wednesday, September 13th will be issued a dividend of $0.18 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, September 12th. This represents a yield of 1.29%. Twenty-First Century Fox’s payout ratio is 22.64%.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Sentry Investment Management LLC grew its holdings in Twenty-First Century Fox by 1.3% during the 2nd quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC now owns 189,680 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,376,000 after purchasing an additional 2,482 shares during the last quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank grew its holdings in Twenty-First Century Fox by 25.5% during the 2nd quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 356,491 shares of the company’s stock valued at $10,101,000 after purchasing an additional 72,459 shares during the last quarter. First Fiduciary Investment Counsel Inc. grew its holdings in Twenty-First Century Fox by 0.9% during the 2nd quarter. First Fiduciary Investment Counsel Inc. now owns 402,906 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,418,000 after purchasing an additional 3,415 shares during the last quarter. Verition Fund Management LLC bought a new position in Twenty-First Century Fox during the 2nd quarter valued at about $365,000. Finally, Sterling Capital Management LLC grew its holdings in Twenty-First Century Fox by 1.2% during the 2nd quarter. Sterling Capital Management LLC now owns 8,494 shares of the company’s stock valued at $241,000 after purchasing an additional 99 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 53.34% of the company’s stock.

Twenty-First Century Fox Company Profile

Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc is a media and entertainment company. The Company’s segments include Cable Network Programming; Television; Filmed Entertainment, and Other, Corporate and Eliminations. The Cable Network Programming segment produces and licenses news, business news, sports, general entertainment, factual entertainment and movie programming for distribution.

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