National CineMedia (NASDAQ:NCMI) Rating Increased to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

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Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of National CineMedia (NASDAQ:NCMI) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report sent to investors on Tuesday morning, Zacks.com reports. The brokerage currently has $7.25 price objective on the business services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “NATIONAL CINEMEDIA operates the largest digital in theatre network in North America that allows them to distribute advertisements and other content for our advertising, meetings and events businesses utilizing our proprietary digital content network. They have long term exhibitor services agreements with our founding members, Cinemark and Regal, the three largest motion picture exhibition companies in the U.S.and multi year agreements with several other theatre operators whom they refer to as network affiliates. The network affiliate agreements grant them exclusive rights, subject to limited exceptions, to sell advertising on their theatre screens. “

A number of other brokerages have also weighed in on NCMI. Barrington Research reaffirmed a hold rating on shares of National CineMedia in a research note on Friday, March 1st. BidaskClub raised shares of National CineMedia from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 8th. TheStreet lowered shares of National CineMedia from a b- rating to a c rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 7th. Wedbush reaffirmed a hold rating and issued a $8.00 price target on shares of National CineMedia in a research note on Tuesday, May 7th. Finally, ValuEngine lowered shares of National CineMedia from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Friday, May 24th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. National CineMedia has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $8.94.

NCMI stock opened at $6.30 on Tuesday. National CineMedia has a 52-week low of $5.88 and a 52-week high of $10.94. The stock has a market cap of $497.51 million, a PE ratio of 17.03 and a beta of 0.81.

National CineMedia (NASDAQ:NCMI) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Monday, May 6th. The business services provider reported ($0.01) earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.02) by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $76.90 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $82.43 million. National CineMedia had a net margin of 6.98% and a negative return on equity of 33.32%. National CineMedia’s quarterly revenue was down 4.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company posted ($0.03) EPS. As a group, research analysts predict that National CineMedia will post 0.44 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 31st. Investors of record on Thursday, May 16th were paid a $0.17 dividend. This represents a $0.68 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 10.79%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, May 15th. National CineMedia’s dividend payout ratio is presently 183.78%.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of NCMI. Bank of Montreal Can lifted its stake in National CineMedia by 41.9% in the 4th quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 5,388 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $35,000 after buying an additional 1,590 shares in the last quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC acquired a new stake in National CineMedia in the 4th quarter valued at about $65,000. Strs Ohio acquired a new stake in National CineMedia in the 4th quarter valued at about $87,000. Meitav Dash Investments Ltd. acquired a new stake in National CineMedia in the 1st quarter valued at about $120,000. Finally, BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA raised its holdings in National CineMedia by 86.2% in the 1st quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 19,046 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $134,000 after acquiring an additional 8,819 shares during the last quarter. 90.91% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

National CineMedia Company Profile

National CineMedia, Inc, through its subsidiary, National CineMedia, LLC, operates a digital in-theater network in North America. The company engages in the sale of advertising to national, regional, and local businesses in Noovie, a cinema advertising and entertainment pre-show seen on movie screens; and sells advertising on its Lobby Entertainment Network, a series of strategically-placed screens located in movie theater lobbies, as well as other forms of advertising and promotions in theatre lobbies.

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