Yelp (YELP) Shares Gap Down After Insider Selling

Yelp Inc (NYSE:YELP) gapped down prior to trading on Thursday after an insider sold shares in the company. The stock had previously closed at $38.48, but opened at $35.70. Yelp shares last traded at $34.31, with a volume of 2979815 shares changing hands.

Specifically, CEO Jeremy Stoppelman sold 13,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $43.22, for a total transaction of $561,860.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Geoffrey L. Donaker sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.09, for a total transaction of $68,180.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 107,983 shares of company stock valued at $4,352,066 over the last 90 days. Company insiders own 9.00% of the company’s stock.

Several equities research analysts have issued reports on the stock. Needham & Company LLC assumed coverage on shares of Yelp in a research report on Tuesday. They set a “hold” rating for the company. Royal Bank of Canada cut their price objective on shares of Yelp to $38.00 and set a “positive” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, November 9th. KeyCorp started coverage on shares of Yelp in a research report on Thursday, December 20th. They set a “sector weight” rating and a $33.86 price objective for the company. SunTrust Banks reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Yelp in a report on Monday, December 10th. Finally, Wedbush cut shares of Yelp from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and lowered their target price for the stock from $60.00 to $32.00 in a report on Friday, November 9th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $40.18.

The company has a market cap of $2.97 billion, a PE ratio of 492.86, a P/E/G ratio of 2.85 and a beta of 0.99.

Yelp (NYSE:YELP) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 8th. The local business review company reported $0.17 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.08 by $0.09. The business had revenue of $241.10 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $245.55 million. Yelp had a net margin of 18.04% and a return on equity of 1.34%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 8.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.29 earnings per share. As a group, sell-side analysts expect that Yelp Inc will post 0.37 EPS for the current fiscal year.

A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in YELP. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group bought a new position in Yelp in the third quarter valued at approximately $161,000. Steward Partners Investment Advisory LLC bought a new position in Yelp in the third quarter valued at approximately $194,000. Janus Henderson Group PLC bought a new position in Yelp in the second quarter valued at approximately $206,000. Ibex Investors LLC bought a new position in Yelp in the third quarter valued at approximately $206,000. Finally, Hartford Investment Management Co. bought a new position in Yelp in the third quarter valued at approximately $232,000. 90.40% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Yelp (NYSE:YELP)

Yelp Inc operates a platform that connects people with local businesses in the United States, Canada, and internationally. The company's platform covers various local business categories, including restaurants, shopping, beauty and fitness, arts, entertainment and events, home and local services, health, nightlife, travel and hotel, auto, and others.

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