Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of American Tower (NYSE:AMT) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report report published on Tuesday.
According to Zacks, “Over the past three months, share price of American Tower declined 5.7%, as against the industry's loss of 9.8%. Moreover, American Tower has a substantially leveraged balance sheet. High customer concentration is likely to affect the company’s top line. Foreign currency exchange rate risks, stiff competition, integration risks and rising operating expenses are other headwinds. However, American Tower’s Indian, EMEA and Latin American operations accounts for almost 50% of its revenue growth. American Tower is expanding its prospects in India with the acquisition of tower businesses from Vodafone India and Idea Cellular. American Tower continues to benefit from increased investment of wireless carriers in 4G LTE and 5G networks. The company’s tower buyouts in emerging markets and long-term tower leases with major wireless carriers have driven its top line and lend it a competitive edge over rivals.”
Several other equities research analysts have also commented on the company. Oppenheimer upped their target price on American Tower from $155.00 to $160.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 20th. Morgan Stanley restated an overweight rating and set a $172.00 target price on shares of American Tower in a research report on Wednesday, December 13th. ValuEngine lowered American Tower from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Friday, December 1st. KeyCorp restated an overweight rating and set a $177.00 target price (up previously from $156.00) on shares of American Tower in a research report on Monday, November 27th. Finally, Argus upped their target price on American Tower to $170.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, November 9th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has issued a hold rating and sixteen have given a buy rating to the company. American Tower has an average rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $158.60.
American Tower declared that its board has authorized a share repurchase program on Thursday, December 7th that permits the company to buyback $2.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the real estate investment trust to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Investors of record on Thursday, December 28th were paid a dividend of $0.70 per share. This is an increase from American Tower’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.66. This represents a $2.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.10%. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, December 27th. American Tower’s dividend payout ratio is 106.46%.
In related news, Director Samme L. Thompson sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, January 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $143.16, for a total transaction of $715,800.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director David E. Sharbutt sold 1,584 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $144.44, for a total value of $228,792.96. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 4,861 shares in the company, valued at $702,122.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 75,251 shares of company stock worth $11,026,134. 0.86% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Atlantic Trust LLC raised its stake in shares of American Tower by 0.5% in the second quarter. Atlantic Trust LLC now owns 4,345 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $575,000 after purchasing an additional 21 shares during the last quarter. Keel Point LLC raised its stake in shares of American Tower by 1.1% in the second quarter. Keel Point LLC now owns 8,711 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $1,153,000 after purchasing an additional 98 shares during the last quarter. Millie Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of American Tower by 0.7% in the second quarter. Millie Capital Management LLC now owns 19,932 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $2,637,000 after purchasing an additional 138 shares during the last quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC raised its stake in shares of American Tower by 1.6% in the second quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 11,444 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $1,514,000 after purchasing an additional 185 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Investment Centers of America Inc. raised its stake in shares of American Tower by 5.6% in the third quarter. Investment Centers of America Inc. now owns 6,495 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $887,000 after purchasing an additional 343 shares during the last quarter. 91.75% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
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American Tower Company Profile
American Tower Corporation (ATC) is a holding company. The Company operates as a real estate investment trust (REIT), which owns, operates and develops multitenant communications real estate. ATC’s segments include U.S. property, Asia property, EMEA property, Latin America property, Services and Other.
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