Evercore ISI Initiates Coverage on VMware (VMW)

Equities researchers at Evercore ISI began coverage on shares of VMware (NYSE:VMW) in a note issued to investors on Monday, February 4th, MarketBeat Ratings reports. The brokerage set an “in-line” rating and a $160.00 price target on the virtualization software provider’s stock. Evercore ISI’s target price would suggest a potential downside of 10.21% from the company’s current price.

Several other analysts also recently weighed in on VMW. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of VMware from a “buy” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 30th. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $145.00 price target (up previously from $142.00) on shares of VMware in a research note on Friday, November 30th. Wedbush reissued an “outperform” rating and set a $200.00 price objective on shares of VMware in a report on Friday, November 30th. Maxim Group reissued a “hold” rating and set a $155.00 price objective (up from $150.00) on shares of VMware in a report on Friday, November 30th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada lifted their price objective on shares of VMware from $180.00 to $200.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, November 30th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and fourteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. VMware currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $177.04.

NYSE VMW traded up $6.39 during trading on Monday, hitting $178.20. The stock had a trading volume of 2,909,421 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,163,051. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.39, a current ratio of 3.04 and a quick ratio of 3.04. VMware has a one year low of $113.30 and a one year high of $183.40. The company has a market cap of $71.07 billion, a P/E ratio of 36.15, a PEG ratio of 2.57 and a beta of 0.73.

VMware (NYSE:VMW) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 28th. The virtualization software provider reported $1.98 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.88 by $0.10. VMware had a net margin of 17.03% and a return on equity of 19.62%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.68 earnings per share. As a group, equities research analysts expect that VMware will post 5.04 EPS for the current year.

In other news, CFO Zane Rowe sold 6,500 shares of VMware stock in a transaction on Wednesday, December 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $165.08, for a total transaction of $1,073,020.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 89,276 shares in the company, valued at $14,737,682.08. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, EVP Maurizio Carli sold 36,848 shares of VMware stock in a transaction on Friday, January 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $146.79, for a total transaction of $5,408,917.92. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 124,578 shares of company stock worth $18,885,326 over the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 29.90% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of VMW. Captrust Financial Advisors lifted its position in VMware by 217.6% during the fourth quarter. Captrust Financial Advisors now owns 216 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $30,000 after purchasing an additional 148 shares during the period. Parkside Financial Bank & Trust acquired a new position in VMware during the fourth quarter valued at $35,000. Rational Advisors LLC lifted its position in VMware by 10,166.7% during the fourth quarter. Rational Advisors LLC now owns 308 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $42,000 after purchasing an additional 305 shares during the period. Taylor Frigon Capital Management LLC acquired a new position in VMware during the fourth quarter valued at $45,000. Finally, NuWave Investment Management LLC lifted its position in VMware by 11,400.0% during the fourth quarter. NuWave Investment Management LLC now owns 345 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $47,000 after purchasing an additional 342 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 18.05% of the company’s stock.

About VMware

VMware, Inc provides compute, cloud, mobility, networking, and security infrastructure software to businesses in the United States and internationally. The company offers compute products, including VMware vSphere, a data center platform, which enables users to deploy hypervisor, a layer of software that resides between the operating system and system hardware to enable compute virtualization; storage and availability products that provide data storage and protection options; network and security products; and cloud management and automation products to manage and automate overarching IT processes involved in provisioning IT services and resources to users from initial infrastructure deployment to retirement.

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