Charter Communications (CHTR) Cut to “Sell” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report report published on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “We remain worried about Charter's operation in a saturated and competitive multi-channel U.S. video market. The company continues to face stiff competition from online TV streaming service providers. We view the company's high debt level and consolidation-related woes as potential hazards. However, the company reported better-than-expected earnings per share and revenues in the fourth-quarter 2017. Additionally, both metrics improved on a year-over-year basis. Despite cord-cutting, the company reported a net gain of 15,000 video, 300,000 Internet and 53,000 voice customers in the reported quarter, respectively. The company’s wireless venture, with plans to launch its wireless services in 2018, look impressive. The company further plans to execute field trials for 5G wireless network. The stock price grew 9.4% in the past three months, outperforming its industry's 6.3% growth.”

CHTR has been the subject of several other reports. Barclays cut Charter Communications from an equal weight rating to an underweight rating and increased their target price for the company from $267.01 to $283.00 in a report on Monday, December 4th. BidaskClub upgraded Charter Communications from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a report on Wednesday, December 27th. Pivotal Research restated a buy rating and set a $420.00 target price (up from $405.00) on shares of Charter Communications in a report on Friday, October 27th. Macquarie restated a buy rating on shares of Charter Communications in a report on Sunday, October 29th. Finally, Moffett Nathanson restated a neutral rating on shares of Charter Communications in a report on Monday, October 16th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and thirteen have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $396.11.

Shares of Charter Communications (NASDAQ CHTR) opened at $349.43 on Wednesday. The firm has a market capitalization of $86,677.88, a PE ratio of 9.75, a P/E/G ratio of 2.93 and a beta of 1.14. Charter Communications has a fifty-two week low of $308.30 and a fifty-two week high of $408.83. The company has a current ratio of 0.23, a quick ratio of 0.40 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.43.

Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR) last issued its earnings results on Friday, February 2nd. The company reported $0.86 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.85 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $10.60 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $10.60 billion. Charter Communications had a return on equity of 1.11% and a net margin of 23.80%. Charter Communications’s quarterly revenue was up 3.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $1.67 EPS. equities analysts predict that Charter Communications will post 4.55 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other Charter Communications news, EVP Jonathan Hargis sold 27,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $364.76, for a total value of $9,848,520.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 34,931 shares in the company, valued at approximately $12,741,431.56. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Company insiders own 0.56% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Meritage Group LP lifted its stake in shares of Charter Communications by 3.4% in the 3rd quarter. Meritage Group LP now owns 2,819,596 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,024,698,000 after purchasing an additional 92,620 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its stake in shares of Charter Communications by 2.3% in the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 2,300,679 shares of the company’s stock valued at $836,081,000 after purchasing an additional 51,758 shares during the period. Ameriprise Financial Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Charter Communications by 315.1% in the 3rd quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 1,384,725 shares of the company’s stock valued at $503,237,000 after purchasing an additional 1,051,151 shares during the period. Swiss National Bank lifted its stake in shares of Charter Communications by 1.1% in the 3rd quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 867,209 shares of the company’s stock valued at $315,161,000 after purchasing an additional 9,600 shares during the period. Finally, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Charter Communications by 1.7% in the 3rd quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. now owns 660,618 shares of the company’s stock valued at $240,082,000 after purchasing an additional 10,868 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.05% of the company’s stock.

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Charter Communications Company Profile

Charter Communications, Inc (Charter) is a provider of cable services, offering various entertainments, information and communications solutions to residential and commercial customers. The Company’s services include Video Services, Internet Services, Voice Services, Commercial Services and Advertising Services.

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