Aaron’s (NYSE:AAN) Reaches New 1-Year High Following Analyst Upgrade

Aaron’s, Inc. (NYSE:AAN) reached a new 52-week high during trading on Monday after ValuEngine upgraded the stock from a hold rating to a buy rating. The company traded as high as $59.97 and last traded at $59.94, with a volume of 21699 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $55.72.

Several other research analysts have also commented on AAN. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Aaron’s from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, April 16th. KeyCorp upped their price objective on shares of Aaron’s from $72.00 to $75.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Monday. Jefferies Financial Group restated a “buy” rating and issued a $65.00 price objective on shares of Aaron’s in a report on Monday, February 18th. Raymond James restated a “buy” rating and issued a $61.00 price objective on shares of Aaron’s in a report on Sunday, February 17th. Finally, Stephens set a $57.00 price objective on shares of Aaron’s and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, February 15th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $63.13.

In other news, Director Ray M. Robinson sold 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.00, for a total value of $162,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 29,912 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,615,248. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Ryan K. Woodley sold 14,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, March 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $49.84, for a total transaction of $697,760.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 122,010 shares in the company, valued at approximately $6,080,978.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 170,720 shares of company stock worth $8,894,952 over the last three months. 2.78% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. American Century Companies Inc. purchased a new position in Aaron’s during the fourth quarter worth $755,000. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan purchased a new stake in shares of Aaron’s during the fourth quarter worth about $691,000. First Citizens Bank & Trust Co. boosted its position in Aaron’s by 37.8% in the first quarter. First Citizens Bank & Trust Co. now owns 8,645 shares of the company’s stock valued at $455,000 after buying an additional 2,370 shares during the last quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. purchased a new stake in Aaron’s in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $8,777,000. Finally, Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY boosted its position in Aaron’s by 71.6% in the 4th quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY now owns 39,522 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,662,000 after purchasing an additional 16,496 shares in the last quarter. 97.77% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

The company has a quick ratio of 0.63, a current ratio of 2.77 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.23. The stock has a market capitalization of $3.77 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.57, a P/E/G ratio of 0.97 and a beta of 0.48.

Aaron’s (NYSE:AAN) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 25th. The company reported $1.08 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.93 by $0.15. The firm had revenue of $1.01 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $991.09 million. Aaron’s had a return on equity of 14.31% and a net margin of 5.15%. The firm’s revenue was up 6.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.81 EPS. Analysts forecast that Aaron’s, Inc. will post 3.82 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 8th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, June 18th will be given a dividend of $0.035 per share. This represents a $0.14 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.24%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, June 17th. Aaron’s’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 4.17%.

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About Aaron’s (NYSE:AAN)

Aaron's, Inc operates as an omnichannel provider of lease-purchase solutions to underserved and credit-challenged customers. It operates in three segments: Progressive Leasing, Aaron's Business, and DAMI. The company also engages in the sale, lease ownership, and specialty retailing of furniture, consumer electronics, home appliances, and accessories.

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