Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMHC) Trading Up 22.6% After Earnings Beat

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Co (NASDAQ:HMHC) was up 22.6% during trading on Thursday following a better than expected earnings announcement. The stock traded as high as $9.23 and last traded at $8.47. Approximately 2,337,885 shares traded hands during trading, an increase of 246% from the average daily volume of 675,992 shares. The stock had previously closed at $6.91.

The business services provider reported $0.70 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.12. The company had revenue of $536.30 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $507.37 million. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt had a negative return on equity of 14.89% and a negative net margin of 4.35%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 3.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.73 EPS.

HMHC has been the subject of several research analyst reports. BidaskClub upgraded Houghton Mifflin Harcourt from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, September 24th. Wells Fargo & Co set a $13.00 price target on Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Sunday, August 5th. Morgan Stanley cut their price target on Houghton Mifflin Harcourt from $8.00 to $7.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a report on Friday, August 3rd. Stifel Nicolaus restated a “hold” rating and set a $7.50 price target (down previously from $8.00) on shares of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in a report on Friday, August 3rd. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut Houghton Mifflin Harcourt from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 10th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $8.42.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Verition Fund Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $113,000. Her Majesty the Queen in Right of the Province of Alberta as represented by Alberta Investment Management Corp purchased a new position in shares of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $116,000. Bank of Montreal Can purchased a new position in shares of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $145,000. Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado purchased a new position in shares of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the 3rd quarter worth approximately $197,000. Finally, Campbell & CO Investment Adviser LLC purchased a new position in shares of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $216,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 95.68% of the company’s stock.

The firm has a market capitalization of $852.52 million, a P/E ratio of -6.78 and a beta of 0.46. The company has a quick ratio of 0.66, a current ratio of 1.05 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.03.

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About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (NASDAQ:HMHC)

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Company, a learning company, provides content, services, and technology solutions for educational institutions and consumers worldwide. The company operates in two segments, Education and Trade Publishing. The Education segment provides educational products, technology platforms, and services, including print and digital content in the form of textbooks, digital courseware, instructional aids, educational assessment, and intervention solutions for students.

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