BidaskClub Upgrades NetApp (NTAP) to “Strong-Buy”

BidaskClub upgraded shares of NetApp (NASDAQ:NTAP) from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research report sent to investors on Saturday morning, BidAskClub reports.

A number of other analysts also recently issued reports on NTAP. Zacks Investment Research downgraded NetApp from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 19th. Morgan Stanley downgraded NetApp from an equal weight rating to an underweight rating and cut their price objective for the stock from $72.00 to $58.00 in a research report on Tuesday, January 15th. OTR Global downgraded NetApp to a positive rating in a research report on Friday, February 8th. Bank of America reissued a buy rating and set a $90.00 price objective on shares of NetApp in a research report on Monday, February 11th. Finally, Oppenheimer reissued a hold rating on shares of NetApp in a research report on Thursday, February 14th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating, sixteen have assigned a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $77.88.

Shares of NTAP opened at $76.16 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.93, a current ratio of 1.56 and a quick ratio of 1.53. The firm has a market capitalization of $18.90 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.47, a P/E/G ratio of 1.32 and a beta of 1.40. NetApp has a 52-week low of $54.50 and a 52-week high of $88.08.

NetApp (NASDAQ:NTAP) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, February 13th. The data storage provider reported $1.20 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.15 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $1.56 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.60 billion. NetApp had a return on equity of 60.32% and a net margin of 16.85%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 1.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.99 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts forecast that NetApp will post 4.04 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, April 24th. Shareholders of record on Friday, April 5th will be given a $0.40 dividend. This represents a $1.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.10%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, April 4th. NetApp’s dividend payout ratio is currently 53.51%.

In other NetApp news, VP Joel D. Reich sold 20,000 shares of NetApp stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, February 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.04, for a total value of $1,280,800.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 744 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $47,645.76. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Henri P. Richard sold 5,050 shares of NetApp stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $66.01, for a total value of $333,350.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 56,707 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,743,229.07. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.19% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. OmniStar Financial Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of NetApp by 14.7% in the 1st quarter. OmniStar Financial Group Inc. now owns 7,288 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $505,000 after buying an additional 933 shares during the period. Calamos Advisors LLC purchased a new position in shares of NetApp in the 1st quarter valued at about $370,000. Pacer Advisors Inc. boosted its stake in shares of NetApp by 157.6% in the 1st quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 65,219 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $4,522,000 after buying an additional 39,905 shares during the period. North Star Investment Management Corp. boosted its stake in shares of NetApp by 660.0% in the 1st quarter. North Star Investment Management Corp. now owns 760 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $53,000 after buying an additional 660 shares during the period. Finally, Pensionfund Sabic boosted its stake in shares of NetApp by 14.3% in the 1st quarter. Pensionfund Sabic now owns 24,000 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $1,664,000 after buying an additional 3,000 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 95.77% of the company’s stock.

About NetApp

NetApp, Inc provides software, systems, and services to manage and share data on-premises, and private and public clouds worldwide. It offers cloud data services, such as ONTAP cloud storage data management and NetApp cloud sync data synchronization services; NetApp SaaS backup for Microsoft Office 365; NetApp cloud backup solutions; OnCommand management software and management integration tools; and NetApp private storage for cloud.

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Analyst Recommendations for NetApp (NASDAQ:NTAP)

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