Ralph Lauren (RL) Upgraded to “Hold” by Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Ralph Lauren (NYSE:RL) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report released on Monday morning.

According to Zacks, “Ralph Lauren outperformed the industry in the past three months. Second-quarter fiscal 2018 marked the company’s 11th consecutive earnings beat and sales topped estimates after two consecutive misses. However, the company’s North America business continues to suffer due to distribution and brand exits; planned reduction in shipments and promotions to enhance the quality of sales; and lower customer demand. Revenues at the North America segment slumped 16% in the second quarter owing to lower retail and wholesale sales. Additionally, high dependence on outside suppliers poses threats. Nonetheless, the company adjusted its fiscal 2018 guidance to account for the recent positive movements in foreign currency rates, which will aid revenue and operating margins in fiscal 2018. The company remains on track to deliver its goals under its Way Forward Plan, which bodes well. Estimates have been going up ahead of the third-quarter earnings.”

Several other equities research analysts have also weighed in on RL. Tigress Financial restated a hold rating on shares of Ralph Lauren in a research report on Thursday, September 28th. Needham & Company LLC restated a hold rating on shares of Ralph Lauren in a research report on Monday, October 16th. Morgan Stanley lifted their price target on Ralph Lauren from $83.50 to $91.00 and gave the company an equal weight rating in a research report on Friday, November 3rd. Cowen set a $97.00 price target on Ralph Lauren and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 1st. Finally, Citigroup lifted their price target on Ralph Lauren from $91.00 to $98.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Friday, November 3rd. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have given a hold rating, seven have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Ralph Lauren has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $88.66.

Shares of Ralph Lauren (NYSE RL) traded up $2.11 during mid-day trading on Monday, hitting $114.89. The stock had a trading volume of 1,519,400 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,105,664. The company has a market cap of $9,166.19, a price-to-earnings ratio of 118.44, a P/E/G ratio of 2.28 and a beta of 0.65. Ralph Lauren has a 12-month low of $66.06 and a 12-month high of $115.32. The company has a current ratio of 2.09, a quick ratio of 1.55 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.08.

Ralph Lauren (NYSE:RL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 2nd. The textile maker reported $1.99 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.90 by $0.09. Ralph Lauren had a return on equity of 14.06% and a net margin of 1.29%. The company had revenue of $1.66 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.64 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.90 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 8.6% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts forecast that Ralph Lauren will post 5.61 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, January 12th. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 29th were paid a dividend of $0.50 per share. This represents a $2.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.74%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, December 28th. Ralph Lauren’s payout ratio is 206.19%.

In other Ralph Lauren news, insider Valerie Hermann sold 2,400 shares of Ralph Lauren stock in a transaction on Friday, November 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $91.22, for a total transaction of $218,928.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 35,028 shares in the company, valued at $3,195,254.16. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. 32.93% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Ralph Lauren by 2.9% in the second quarter. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC now owns 18,875 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $1,393,000 after purchasing an additional 532 shares during the last quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Ralph Lauren by 1.6% in the second quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC now owns 37,912 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $2,798,000 after purchasing an additional 594 shares during the last quarter. Hosking Partners LLP raised its stake in shares of Ralph Lauren by 0.4% in the third quarter. Hosking Partners LLP now owns 174,778 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $15,431,000 after purchasing an additional 617 shares during the last quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System raised its stake in shares of Ralph Lauren by 0.4% in the second quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 170,900 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $12,612,000 after purchasing an additional 700 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Pictet Asset Management Ltd. raised its stake in shares of Ralph Lauren by 2.5% in the third quarter. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. now owns 28,862 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $2,548,000 after purchasing an additional 700 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 66.59% of the company’s stock.

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About Ralph Lauren

Ralph Lauren Corporation is engaged in the design, marketing and distribution of lifestyle products, including apparel, accessories, home furnishings and other licensed product categories. The Company operates through three segments: Wholesale, Retail and Licensing. Wholesale business consists of sales made to department stores and specialty stores around the world.

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