Service Corporation International (SCI) Cut to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Service Corporation International (NYSE:SCI) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report released on Saturday.

According to Zacks, “Service Corp. is the largest provider of funeral and cemetery services in the world. The funeral and cemetery operations consist of the Company’s funeral service locations, cemeteries and related businesses. The financial services operations represent a combination of the Company’s insurance operations primarily related to the funding of prearranged funeral contracts and a lending subsidiary, which previously provided capital financing for independent funeral home and cemetery operations. “

SCI has been the subject of a number of other research reports. BidaskClub upgraded Service Corporation International from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research report on Saturday, August 19th. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reiterated an outperform rating and set a $37.00 price target (up previously from $34.00) on shares of Service Corporation International in a research report on Friday, July 21st. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $37.00.

Service Corporation International (NYSE:SCI) opened at 35.34 on Friday. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $35.02 and a 200 day moving average price of $32.66. Service Corporation International has a 52-week low of $24.90 and a 52-week high of $35.89. The stock has a market cap of $6.62 billion, a PE ratio of 19.15 and a beta of 0.93.

Service Corporation International (NYSE:SCI) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 26th. The company reported $0.35 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.30 by $0.05. Service Corporation International had a return on equity of 24.67% and a net margin of 11.59%. The company had revenue of $773.20 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $769.57 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.28 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 2.9% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts anticipate that Service Corporation International will post $1.47 earnings per share for the current year.

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The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 29th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be issued a $0.15 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 14th. This represents a $0.60 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.70%. Service Corporation International’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 32.43%.

In other news, CEO Thomas L. Ryan sold 100,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, September 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.92, for a total value of $3,492,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 1,175,109 shares in the company, valued at $41,034,806.28. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, insider Tammy R. Moore sold 41,400 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, September 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $34.85, for a total value of $1,442,790.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 59,220 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,063,817. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 530,500 shares of company stock valued at $18,479,593. Insiders own 6.20% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. 361 Capital LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Service Corporation International by 22.4% in the second quarter. 361 Capital LLC now owns 184,704 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,178,000 after buying an additional 33,748 shares during the period. Green Square Capital LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Service Corporation International in the second quarter valued at $262,000. State Street Corp lifted its holdings in shares of Service Corporation International by 0.4% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 4,961,421 shares of the company’s stock valued at $165,957,000 after buying an additional 20,669 shares during the period. Flinton Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Service Corporation International by 59.4% in the second quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 16,912 shares of the company’s stock valued at $566,000 after buying an additional 6,300 shares during the period. Finally, Balyasny Asset Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Service Corporation International by 271.3% in the second quarter. Balyasny Asset Management LLC now owns 777,768 shares of the company’s stock valued at $26,016,000 after buying an additional 568,279 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 84.83% of the company’s stock.

Service Corporation International Company Profile

Service Corporation International is a provider of deathcare products and services, with a network of funeral service locations and cemeteries. The Company’s segments include Funeral, Cemetery and Corporate. It conducts both funeral and cemetery operations in the United States and Canada. As December 31, 2016, it operated 1,502 funeral service locations and 470 cemeteries, including 281 funeral service/cemetery combination locations, which are geographically diversified across 45 states, eight Canadian provinces, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

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