Carriage Services (CSV) Cut to Sell at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Carriage Services (NYSE:CSV) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note issued to investors on Thursday morning.

According to Zacks, “Carriage Services, Inc. is a leading provider of death care services and products in the United States. Carriage provides a complete range of services relating to funerals, burials and cremations, including the use of funeral homes and motor vehicles, the performance of cemetery interment services and the management and maintenance of cemetery grounds. They also sell related products and merchandise including caskets, burial vaults, garments, cemetery interment rights, stone and bronze memorials, as well as other items. “

Shares of Carriage Services (NYSE:CSV) traded down $0.05 during midday trading on Thursday, reaching $25.71. 22,344 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 134,264. The stock has a market cap of $422.26, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.21, a PEG ratio of 0.97 and a beta of 0.82. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.86, a quick ratio of 0.54 and a current ratio of 0.70. Carriage Services has a 12 month low of $23.15 and a 12 month high of $28.96.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 1st. Investors of record on Monday, February 12th will be issued a $0.075 dividend. This represents a $0.30 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.17%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, February 9th. Carriage Services’s payout ratio is presently 29.41%.

Carriage Services announced that its Board of Directors has approved a stock repurchase program on Wednesday, October 25th that authorizes the company to repurchase $15.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are often an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

In related news, COO Mark R. Bruce sold 3,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, December 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $26.40, for a total value of $79,200.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. In the last three months, insiders sold 4,241 shares of company stock valued at $111,354. 13.40% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of CSV. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. increased its holdings in Carriage Services by 0.9% in the 2nd quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 57,483 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,550,000 after acquiring an additional 489 shares in the last quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. acquired a new stake in Carriage Services during the 2nd quarter worth $229,000. Teachers Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Carriage Services by 15.6% during the 2nd quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 38,724 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,044,000 after purchasing an additional 5,228 shares during the last quarter. New York State Common Retirement Fund boosted its stake in Carriage Services by 25.5% during the 2nd quarter. New York State Common Retirement Fund now owns 18,700 shares of the company’s stock worth $504,000 after purchasing an additional 3,799 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in Carriage Services by 11.2% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 672,941 shares of the company’s stock worth $18,142,000 after purchasing an additional 67,928 shares during the last quarter. 89.94% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Carriage Services

Carriage Services, Inc is a provider of death care services and merchandise in the United States. The Company operates in two business segments: Funeral Home Operations and Cemetery Operations. The Funeral Homes segment provides funeral services (traditional burial and cremation) and sells related merchandise, such as caskets and urns.

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