Motorola Solutions (MSI) Lowered to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Motorola Solutions (NYSE:MSI) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Motorola Solutions have outperformed its industry in a year. The company's efforts to strengthen its software product portfolio also raise optimism in the stock. In keeping with its objective, the company completed the acquisition of Kodiak Networks in August 2017. The company's decision, in November 2017, to raise its quarterly dividend payout is also encouraging. We are also impressed by the upbeat 2017 view provided by the company. Though positive on Motorola's growth by acquisition strategy, we note that costs associated with the mergers are limiting bottom-line growth. The company's weak balance sheet is also concerning. Moreover, the company's cash from operations is being hurt due to higher working capital requirement from the implementation of a new ERP system. “

Several other brokerages also recently issued reports on MSI. Jefferies Group increased their price target on Motorola Solutions from $105.00 to $110.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, November 3rd. ValuEngine downgraded Motorola Solutions from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 15th. Finally, Cleveland Research upgraded Motorola Solutions from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, October 6th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $95.08.

Shares of Motorola Solutions (MSI) traded down $0.70 during midday trading on Monday, reaching $92.12. The company had a trading volume of 814,300 shares, compared to its average volume of 984,850. Motorola Solutions has a 52-week low of $76.92 and a 52-week high of $95.30. The firm has a market cap of $14,980.00, a P/E ratio of 23.56, a P/E/G ratio of 3.88 and a beta of 0.35. The company has a current ratio of 1.30, a quick ratio of 1.16 and a debt-to-equity ratio of -5.41.

Motorola Solutions (NYSE:MSI) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 2nd. The communications equipment provider reported $1.53 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.40 by $0.13. Motorola Solutions had a negative return on equity of 92.09% and a net margin of 10.51%. The firm had revenue of $1.65 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.58 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.37 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 7.4% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts predict that Motorola Solutions will post 5.13 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other news, EVP Bruce W. Brda sold 5,916 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $92.41, for a total transaction of $546,697.56. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Chairman Gregory Q. Brown sold 50,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $94.32, for a total value of $4,716,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 359,286 shares of company stock valued at $33,178,275 over the last 90 days. Insiders own 2.50% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of MSI. Pacer Advisors Inc. lifted its position in shares of Motorola Solutions by 8.1% during the second quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 3,473 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $301,000 after purchasing an additional 261 shares during the last quarter. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. lifted its position in shares of Motorola Solutions by 1.6% during the second quarter. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. now owns 4,569 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $396,000 after purchasing an additional 73 shares during the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lifted its position in shares of Motorola Solutions by 111.3% during the second quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 686,510 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $59,548,000 after purchasing an additional 361,621 shares during the last quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group lifted its position in shares of Motorola Solutions by 50.2% during the second quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 37,620 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $3,265,000 after purchasing an additional 12,566 shares during the last quarter. Finally, CIBC World Markets Inc. lifted its position in shares of Motorola Solutions by 33.0% during the second quarter. CIBC World Markets Inc. now owns 8,880 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock worth $770,000 after purchasing an additional 2,204 shares during the last quarter. 87.78% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Motorola Solutions

Motorola Solutions, Inc is a provider of communication infrastructure, devices, accessories, software and services. The Company operates through two segments: Products and Services. The Company’s Products segment offers a portfolio of infrastructure, devices, accessories and software. The Products segment has two product lines: Devices and Systems.

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