Strategic Education (STRA) Rating Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Strategic Education (NASDAQ:STRA) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Strategic Education have broadly outperformed its industry in a year's time. Its earnings estimates for 2019 have remained stable over the past 60 days. Strong new student enrollment at Strayer University owing to its continuous focus on undergraduate programs will drive growth. Both the universities’ convenient, accessible and flexible educational programs, designed specifically to meet the educational needs of working adult, is encouraging. Also, its focus on competency-based and non-degree programs bode well. However, continuous decline in revenue per student due to tuition cuts and an unfavorable mix of students toward lower undergraduate tuition are causes of concern. In addition, the company is exposed to seasonal fluctuations and rising government interference, which is likely to hamper its performance in the near term.”

Several other research firms have also recently issued reports on STRA. Barrington Research upped their price objective on Strategic Education to $175.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Thursday, November 8th. BMO Capital Markets boosted their target price on Strategic Education to $158.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday, November 12th. BidaskClub downgraded Strategic Education from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, November 17th. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded Strategic Education from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, January 7th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $149.60.

Shares of NASDAQ:STRA traded up $2.94 on Wednesday, hitting $117.84. 7,072 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 135,472. The stock has a market cap of $2.41 billion, a P/E ratio of 37.89, a P/E/G ratio of 1.46 and a beta of 1.12. Strategic Education has a 1-year low of $80.75 and a 1-year high of $154.89.

In other news, Director Todd A. Milano bought 280 shares of Strategic Education stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 12th. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $122.53 per share, with a total value of $34,308.40. Following the acquisition, the director now owns 23,093 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,829,585.29. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, insider J Kevin Gilligan sold 3,343 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, November 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $132.19, for a total value of $441,911.17. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 61,994 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $8,194,986.86. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 13,343 shares of company stock valued at $1,773,861 over the last three months. Company insiders own 3.70% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Shelton Capital Management raised its stake in Strategic Education by 4.8% during the 4th quarter. Shelton Capital Management now owns 2,179 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $247,000 after acquiring an additional 99 shares during the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue raised its stake in Strategic Education by 1.4% during the 4th quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 7,258 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $823,000 after acquiring an additional 100 shares during the last quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank raised its stake in Strategic Education by 12.3% during the 4th quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 1,397 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $158,000 after acquiring an additional 153 shares during the last quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors Inc. raised its stake in Strategic Education by 4.2% during the 4th quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors Inc. now owns 5,152 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $584,000 after acquiring an additional 207 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bank of Montreal Can raised its stake in Strategic Education by 18.2% during the 4th quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 1,401 shares of the health services provider’s stock valued at $159,000 after acquiring an additional 216 shares during the last quarter. 97.97% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Strategic Education Company Profile

Strategic Education, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides a range of post-secondary education and other academic programs in the United States. The company operates Strayer University and Capella University that provide undergraduate and graduate degree programs in business administration, accounting, information technology, education, health services administration, nursing, public administration, and criminal justice to working adult students through its 74 physical campuses primarily located in the Mid-Atlantic and Southern regions, as well as through online.

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