Target (NYSE:TGT) Upgraded at MKM Partners

MKM Partners upgraded shares of Target (NYSE:TGT) from a sell rating to a neutral rating in a research report sent to investors on Thursday, AnalystRatings.net reports. The brokerage currently has $156.00 price target on the retailer’s stock, up from their prior price target of $127.00.

Several other equities research analysts have also issued reports on TGT. DA Davidson initiated coverage on shares of Target in a research note on Friday, August 14th. They set a buy rating and a $152.00 price target for the company. Raymond James restated a buy rating and issued a $180.00 target price on shares of Target in a research note on Wednesday, August 19th. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft initiated coverage on Target in a research note on Thursday, October 8th. They set a buy rating for the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Target from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $163.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Thursday, August 20th. Finally, Jefferies Financial Group started coverage on shares of Target in a report on Friday, October 16th. They set a hold rating and a $180.00 price objective on the stock. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, sixteen have given a buy rating and three have issued a strong buy rating to the company. Target has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $147.14.

TGT stock opened at $172.31 on Thursday. The stock has a market cap of $86.26 billion, a P/E ratio of 24.86, a P/E/G ratio of 3.16 and a beta of 0.85. The company has a current ratio of 1.11, a quick ratio of 0.55 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.13. The stock’s fifty day simple moving average is $160.71 and its two-hundred day simple moving average is $137.47. Target has a 1-year low of $90.17 and a 1-year high of $174.41.

Target (NYSE:TGT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, November 17th. The retailer reported $2.79 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.60 by $1.19. Target had a net margin of 4.16% and a return on equity of 30.25%. The company had revenue of $22.63 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $20.91 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.36 EPS. As a group, analysts forecast that Target will post 7.18 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 10th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, November 18th will be paid a $0.68 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, November 17th. This represents a $2.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.58%. Target’s dividend payout ratio is currently 42.57%.

In other news, insider Mark Schindele sold 2,404 shares of Target stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $155.00, for a total transaction of $372,620.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Stephanie A. Lundquist sold 4,471 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, October 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $161.00, for a total transaction of $719,831.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 49,789 shares of company stock worth $7,773,422. Insiders own 0.52% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Target by 4.8% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 44,602,806 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $5,349,215,000 after purchasing an additional 2,041,534 shares in the last quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB boosted its stake in Target by 78.7% in the second quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 6,998,144 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $832,990,000 after buying an additional 3,081,398 shares in the last quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC boosted its stake in Target by 2.6% in the second quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 4,558,482 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $543,007,000 after buying an additional 114,717 shares in the last quarter. Two Sigma Advisers LP grew its position in Target by 203.4% during the second quarter. Two Sigma Advisers LP now owns 3,622,270 shares of the retailer’s stock valued at $434,419,000 after acquiring an additional 2,428,400 shares during the last quarter. Finally, UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. raised its stake in shares of Target by 2.3% during the third quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 2,986,521 shares of the retailer’s stock worth $470,138,000 after acquiring an additional 68,502 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 80.87% of the company’s stock.

About Target

Target Corporation operates as a general merchandise retailer in the United States. The company offers food assortments, including perishables, dry grocery, dairy, and frozen items; apparel, accessories, home décor products, electronics, toys, seasonal offerings, and other merchandise; beauty and household essentials; The company also provides in-store amenities, such as Target Café, Target Optical, Starbucks, and other food service offerings.

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