Vmware, Inc. (VMW) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Vmware, Inc. (NYSE:VMW) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report published on Monday morning.

According to Zacks, “VMware is benefitted by robust performance of its product offerings like NSX, AirWatch, vSphere, and vSAN. During the last reported quarter, the company unveiled major updates across its VMware vRealize Cloud Management Platform. We believe that expanding product portfolio, partnerships with the likes of Intel, Samsung, Fujitsu, Pivotal, Alphabet, and Microsoft along with continuing enterprise deal wins will drive results in the rest of fiscal 2018. Further, the company's latest partnership with SAP will help it benefit in the Internet of Things (IoT) market. Moreover, aggressive share repurchase will support bottom-line. The company has outperformed the industry on a year-to-date basis.”

A number of other research analysts have also weighed in on VMW. Citigroup Inc. raised their target price on Vmware from $120.00 to $124.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Friday, August 11th. Mizuho raised their target price on Vmware from $90.00 to $95.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a report on Monday, August 14th. Robert W. Baird set a $115.00 target price on Vmware and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Monday, August 14th. Cowen and Company restated a market perform rating and issued a $104.00 target price (up previously from $98.00) on shares of Vmware in a report on Monday, August 14th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets raised their target price on Vmware from $105.00 to $110.00 and gave the company a market perform rating in a report on Tuesday, August 15th. Fifteen equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eighteen have given a buy rating to the company. Vmware has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $113.88.

Vmware (NYSE:VMW) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, August 24th. The virtualization software provider reported $1.19 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.15 by $0.04. Vmware had a return on equity of 18.06% and a net margin of 17.81%. The company had revenue of $1.90 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.89 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.97 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.2% on a year-over-year basis.

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Vmware announced that its board has initiated a stock buyback plan on Monday, August 14th that allows the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the virtualization software provider to buy up to 2.5% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

In related news, CFO Zane Rowe sold 6,000 shares of Vmware stock in a transaction on Friday, September 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $107.82, for a total transaction of $646,920.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider P. Kevan Krysler sold 13,751 shares of Vmware stock in a transaction on Friday, September 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $107.69, for a total value of $1,480,845.19. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 20,885 shares of company stock valued at $2,248,548 in the last three months. 0.52% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of VMW. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. boosted its stake in Vmware by 23.4% during the first quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 8,372 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $770,000 after buying an additional 1,589 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in Vmware by 1.0% during the first quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 89,123 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $8,211,000 after buying an additional 875 shares during the period. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. boosted its stake in Vmware by 4.9% during the first quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 170,870 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $15,744,000 after buying an additional 8,017 shares during the period. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. bought a new stake in Vmware during the first quarter valued at $141,000. Finally, State Street Corp boosted its stake in Vmware by 5.6% during the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 1,820,443 shares of the virtualization software provider’s stock valued at $167,732,000 after buying an additional 96,667 shares during the period. 22.28% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Vmware Company Profile

VMware, Inc is an information technology (IT) company. The Company is engaged in development and application of virtualization technologies with x86 server-based computing, separating application software from the underlying hardware. The Company offers various products, which allow organizations to manage IT resources across private clouds and multi-cloud, multi-device environments by leveraging synergies across three product categories: Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC), Hybrid Cloud Computing and End-User Computing (EUC).

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