Meritage Homes (MTH) Lifted to “Buy” at Zelman & Associates

Zelman & Associates upgraded shares of Meritage Homes (NYSE:MTH) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report released on Friday, The Fly reports.

MTH has been the subject of a number of other reports. Zacks Investment Research cut Meritage Homes from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 9th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut Meritage Homes from a neutral rating to an underweight rating and set a $36.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Thursday, March 7th. ValuEngine raised Meritage Homes from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 9th. JMP Securities cut Meritage Homes from an outperform rating to a market perform rating and set a $45.08 price objective for the company. in a research report on Friday, February 1st. Finally, Citigroup decreased their price objective on Meritage Homes from $47.00 to $45.00 and set a buy rating for the company in a research report on Friday, January 4th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $44.31.

Meritage Homes stock opened at $48.68 on Friday. Meritage Homes has a twelve month low of $32.02 and a twelve month high of $49.83. The company has a quick ratio of 1.32, a current ratio of 1.32 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.76. The company has a market cap of $1.88 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.72, a P/E/G ratio of 1.11 and a beta of 1.15.

Meritage Homes (NYSE:MTH) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 30th. The construction company reported $1.91 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.52 by $0.39. Meritage Homes had a return on equity of 13.49% and a net margin of 6.47%. The company had revenue of $1.01 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $958.84 million. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.87 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 6.6% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, research analysts forecast that Meritage Homes will post 4.62 EPS for the current year.

In other news, CEO Steven J. Hilton sold 27,877 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, March 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.40, for a total value of $1,209,861.80. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, EVP C Timothy White sold 19,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, February 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $45.07, for a total value of $878,865.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 89,611 shares of company stock valued at $3,924,400 over the last three months. Insiders own 6.10% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Macquarie Group Ltd. lifted its holdings in shares of Meritage Homes by 2.4% in the 4th quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 1,882,295 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $69,118,000 after buying an additional 44,260 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Meritage Homes by 2.6% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 3,771,037 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $150,464,000 after buying an additional 95,924 shares during the period. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB lifted its holdings in shares of Meritage Homes by 49.2% in the 4th quarter. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB now owns 11,523 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $423,000 after buying an additional 3,800 shares during the period. Capital Impact Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Meritage Homes by 11.7% in the 4th quarter. Capital Impact Advisors LLC now owns 44,526 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $1,639,000 after buying an additional 4,670 shares during the period. Finally, B. Riley Financial Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Meritage Homes in the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $432,000. 97.14% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Meritage Homes

Meritage Homes Corporation designs and builds single-family homes in the United States. The company operates through two segments, Homebuilding and Financial Services. It acquires and develops land; and constructs, markets, and sells homes for first-time and first move-up buyers. The company also offers luxury homes; and title insurance and closing/settlement services to its homebuyers.

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