Zacks Investment Research Downgrades ChoicePoint (CPS) to Hold

Zacks Investment Research Downgrades ChoicePoint (CPS) to Hold

ChoicePoint (NYSE:CPS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Over the past year, shares of Cooper-Standard have outperformed the industry it belongs to.  The year over year improvement in adjusted earnings per share can be attributed to rise in operating efficiency and decline in selling, general, administrative and engineering (SGA&E) expenses, which were partly offset by customer price reductions, unfavorable volume and mix, and high material costs. Favorable exchange rate fluctuations, primarily in Europe and Asia and cost-saving initiatives are positives for the company as well. However, geopolitical and economic uncertainties, commodity cost inflation and pricing pressures are headwinds before Cooper Standard.”

A number of other equities analysts have also commented on the company. Buckingham Research lowered their price objective on ChoicePoint from $165.00 to $140.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, October 3rd. ValuEngine lowered ChoicePoint from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 2nd. Finally, Roth Capital raised their price objective on ChoicePoint from $150.00 to $160.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 2nd. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $127.40.

ChoicePoint stock opened at $103.31 on Monday. ChoicePoint has a one year low of $102.97 and a one year high of $146.77. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.81, a quick ratio of 1.54 and a current ratio of 1.78. The firm has a market cap of $2.14 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.32 and a beta of 0.74.

ChoicePoint (NYSE:CPS) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 1st. The auto parts company reported $2.74 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.99 by ($0.25). ChoicePoint had a return on equity of 24.74% and a net margin of 4.10%. The company had revenue of $928.26 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $903.17 million. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $2.60 EPS. ChoicePoint’s revenue was up 2.1% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that ChoicePoint will post 12.23 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

ChoicePoint declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback plan on Wednesday, June 20th that allows the company to repurchase $150.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the auto parts company to buy up to 5.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are often an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

In other news, insider Miguel Posada Juan Fernando De sold 2,100 shares of ChoicePoint stock in a transaction on Friday, August 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $144.00, for a total value of $302,400.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 7,931 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,142,064. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, VP Keith Dwayne Stephenson sold 14,500 shares of ChoicePoint stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $140.61, for a total value of $2,038,845.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 49,959 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,024,734.99. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 23,600 shares of company stock worth $3,321,245. Corporate insiders own 3.00% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank increased its stake in shares of ChoicePoint by 37.4% in the 2nd quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 1,329 shares of the auto parts company’s stock valued at $174,000 after purchasing an additional 362 shares during the last quarter. Point72 Asia Hong Kong Ltd acquired a new stake in shares of ChoicePoint during the 1st quarter valued at $192,000. Affinity Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of ChoicePoint during the 2nd quarter valued at $204,000. Koch Industries Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of ChoicePoint during the 1st quarter valued at $275,000. Finally, Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL acquired a new stake in shares of ChoicePoint during the 2nd quarter valued at $287,000. Institutional investors own 98.84% of the company’s stock.

About ChoicePoint

Cooper-Standard Holdings Inc, through its subsidiary, Cooper-Standard Automotive Inc, designs, manufactures, and sells sealing, fuel and brake delivery, fluid transfer, and anti-vibration systems worldwide. It operates in four segments: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and South America. The company's sealing systems include dynamic and static seals, encapsulated glasses, stainless steel trims, flush glass systems, variable extrusions, and specialty sealing products.

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