Oracle (ORCL) Cut to “Sell” at Zacks Investment Research

Oracle (NYSE:ORCL) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Oracle reported encouraging second-quarter results, with both the top and bottom line surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Also, year-over-year comparisons on both counts were favourable. Oracle’s top-line growth benefited from the ongoing cloud-based momentum. However, the company’s soft cloud outlook for the third quarter reflects intensifying competition from Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS) in the cloud. Moreover, higher investments on PaaS and IaaS will keep margins under pressure in the near term. Further, a strong U.S. dollar remains a headwind. Shares of the company have also underperformed the industry on a year-to-date basis. Nevertheless, we believe that the company is benefiting from significant momentum in the SaaS offerings. Moreover, the next-generation autonomous database, which is supported by machine learning, is a key catalyst.”

Several other equities analysts have also issued reports on ORCL. J P Morgan Chase & Co set a $55.00 price target on shares of Oracle and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday. Wedbush reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $58.00 price target on shares of Oracle in a report on Friday. Royal Bank of Canada set a $51.00 price target on shares of Oracle and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Monday. Canaccord Genuity cut their price target on shares of Oracle from $57.00 to $53.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Friday. Finally, BMO Capital Markets cut their price target on shares of Oracle from $57.00 to $55.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Friday. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have assigned a hold rating and twenty-seven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $55.26.

Oracle (ORCL) opened at $47.71 on Tuesday. The company has a market cap of $201,579.36, a P/E ratio of 18.43, a P/E/G ratio of 1.84 and a beta of 1.05. Oracle has a 12 month low of $38.30 and a 12 month high of $53.14. The company has a quick ratio of 5.04, a current ratio of 5.07 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.03.

Oracle (NYSE:ORCL) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, December 14th. The enterprise software provider reported $0.70 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.68 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $9.63 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.57 billion. Oracle had a net margin of 25.48% and a return on equity of 20.49%. Oracle’s revenue for the quarter was up 6.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.61 earnings per share. analysts forecast that Oracle will post 2.68 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Oracle announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase plan on Thursday, December 14th that authorizes the company to buyback $12.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the enterprise software provider to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

In related news, EVP Dorian Daley sold 76,703 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, October 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $49.00, for a total transaction of $3,758,447.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, Director Hector Garcia-Molina sold 3,750 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $48.70, for a total transaction of $182,625.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 305,776 shares of company stock worth $14,814,687 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 29.00% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of ORCL. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Oracle by 2.6% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 206,441,876 shares of the enterprise software provider’s stock worth $10,350,996,000 after acquiring an additional 5,270,359 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in shares of Oracle by 2.5% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 193,791,492 shares of the enterprise software provider’s stock worth $9,716,707,000 after acquiring an additional 4,678,977 shares during the period. Harris Associates L P raised its position in shares of Oracle by 17.9% in the second quarter. Harris Associates L P now owns 48,989,216 shares of the enterprise software provider’s stock worth $2,456,319,000 after acquiring an additional 7,427,501 shares during the period. Northern Trust Corp raised its position in shares of Oracle by 4.6% in the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 42,098,104 shares of the enterprise software provider’s stock worth $2,110,799,000 after acquiring an additional 1,835,835 shares during the period. Finally, First Eagle Investment Management LLC raised its position in shares of Oracle by 1.2% in the second quarter. First Eagle Investment Management LLC now owns 41,717,395 shares of the enterprise software provider’s stock worth $2,091,710,000 after acquiring an additional 482,220 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 57.40% of the company’s stock.

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Oracle Company Profile

Oracle Corporation (Oracle) provides products and services that address all aspects of corporate information technology (IT) environments, including application, platform and infrastructure. The Company’s businesses include cloud and on-premise software, hardware and services. Its cloud and on-premise software business consists of three segments, including cloud software and on-premise software, which includes Software as a Service (SaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) offerings, cloud infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and software license updates and product support.

Analyst Recommendations for Oracle (NYSE:ORCL)

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