Grand Canyon Education (LOPE) Downgraded to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Grand Canyon Education (NASDAQ:LOPE) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Grand Canyon Education, Inc. is a regionally accredited provider of online postsecondary education services focused on offering graduate and undergraduate degree programs in its core disciplines of education, business, and healthcare. In addition to its online programs, it offers programs at its traditional campus in Phoenix, Arizona and onsite at the facilities of employers. “

Other analysts have also issued reports about the company. Robert W. Baird dropped their target price on Grand Canyon Education from $141.00 to $130.00 and set an outperform rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, December 19th. ValuEngine raised Grand Canyon Education from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Friday, February 22nd. BidaskClub raised Grand Canyon Education from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a report on Friday, February 22nd. BMO Capital Markets raised their target price on Grand Canyon Education to $130.00 and gave the stock an outperform rating in a report on Friday, February 22nd. Finally, Barrington Research reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $135.00 target price on shares of Grand Canyon Education in a report on Friday, February 8th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has given a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $133.80.

Grand Canyon Education stock opened at $118.83 on Wednesday. The stock has a market cap of $5.66 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.06, a P/E/G ratio of 1.43 and a beta of 0.96. Grand Canyon Education has a 52 week low of $90.67 and a 52 week high of $130.10. The company has a current ratio of 3.84, a quick ratio of 4.65 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.02.

Grand Canyon Education (NASDAQ:LOPE) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, February 20th. The company reported $1.56 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.42 by $0.14. The firm had revenue of $177.54 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $175.25 million. Grand Canyon Education had a return on equity of 22.16% and a net margin of 27.09%. Grand Canyon Education’s revenue for the quarter was down 34.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.41 earnings per share. Research analysts anticipate that Grand Canyon Education will post 5.12 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other Grand Canyon Education news, insider Joseph N. Mildenhall sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, December 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $110.71, for a total value of $221,420.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 77,402 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $8,569,175.42. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CEO Brian E. Mueller sold 30,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $111.39, for a total value of $3,341,700.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 308,339 shares in the company, valued at $34,345,881.21. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 47,000 shares of company stock worth $5,233,970. 2.40% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of LOPE. Bank of New York Mellon Corp grew its holdings in Grand Canyon Education by 4.9% in the second quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 550,261 shares of the company’s stock valued at $61,415,000 after purchasing an additional 25,931 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can boosted its stake in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 3.3% in the third quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 21,171 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,388,000 after acquiring an additional 669 shares during the last quarter. Aperio Group LLC boosted its stake in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 11.4% in the third quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 13,810 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,558,000 after acquiring an additional 1,412 shares during the last quarter. Cornerstone Wealth Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 43.8% in the third quarter. Cornerstone Wealth Management LLC now owns 38,658 shares of the company’s stock worth $438,000 after acquiring an additional 11,781 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Strs Ohio boosted its stake in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 13.9% in the third quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 3,942 shares of the company’s stock worth $444,000 after acquiring an additional 482 shares during the last quarter. 92.56% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Grand Canyon Education Company Profile

Grand Canyon Education, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides education services in the United States and Canada. The company operates Grand Canyon University that offers approximately 225 graduate and undergraduate degree programs and certificates across 9 colleges online and on ground through campus in Phoenix, Arizona; leased facilities; and facilities owned by third party employers.

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