TrueBlue, Inc. (NYSE:TBI) shares were up 14.1% on Tuesday after the company announced better than expected quarterly earnings. The company traded as high as $27.45 and last traded at $27.10. Approximately 789,320 shares changed hands during mid-day trading, an increase of 178% from the average daily volume of 283,988 shares. The stock had previously closed at $23.75.
The business services provider reported $0.60 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.02. TrueBlue had a return on equity of 14.13% and a net margin of 2.22%. The company had revenue of $660.78 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $651.91 million. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.70 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 5.2% compared to the same quarter last year.
TrueBlue announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase program on Monday, October 30th that authorizes the company to repurchase $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the business services provider to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are typically a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
TBI has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. BMO Capital Markets restated a “hold” rating and issued a $23.00 target price (down previously from $26.00) on shares of TrueBlue in a research note on Friday, August 11th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded TrueBlue from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. BidaskClub cut TrueBlue from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 25th. TheStreet raised TrueBlue from a “c” rating to a “b” rating in a report on Monday, July 31st. Finally, Robert W. Baird increased their target price on TrueBlue from $25.00 to $26.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Tuesday. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $23.33.
In other news, EVP Wayne W. Larkin sold 10,000 shares of TrueBlue stock in a transaction dated Friday, September 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $20.38, for a total transaction of $203,800.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. 2.00% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in TBI. Meeder Asset Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of TrueBlue by 192.7% during the 3rd quarter. Meeder Asset Management Inc. now owns 4,706 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $106,000 after acquiring an additional 3,098 shares in the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue raised its position in shares of TrueBlue by 79.6% during the 2nd quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 8,371 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $221,000 after purchasing an additional 3,711 shares during the last quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its position in shares of TrueBlue by 381.4% during the 3rd quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 10,481 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $235,000 after purchasing an additional 8,304 shares during the last quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. acquired a new position in shares of TrueBlue during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $236,000. Finally, Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new position in shares of TrueBlue during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $244,000. 89.76% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
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TrueBlue Company Profile
TrueBlue, Inc is a provider of specialized workforce solutions. The Company is engaged in providing staffing, on-site workforce management and recruitment process outsourcing services. The Company operates through three segments: PeopleReady, PeopleManagement and PeopleScout. Its PeopleReady segment provides blue-collar contingent staffing through the PeopleReady service line.
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