Verisk Analytics (VRSK) Downgraded to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Verisk Analytics (NASDAQ:VRSK) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Saturday, January 13th.

According to Zacks, “Verisk continuously seeks to expand its portfolio by leveraging its deep knowledge and embedded position to develop new, proprietary data sets and predictive analytics. The company has extended its scalable data and analytic solutions by steadily putting resources into overseas markets. The scalability of its products has further led to highly cash-generative businesses characterized by high net margins and relatively low capital intensity. Verisk has also outperformed the industry in the last three months. However, Verisk is susceptible to operational risks related to security breaches in its facilities and databases, resulting in a loss of credibility. With modest revenue coming from the U.K., Verisk is likely to be stifled by the renegotiated deals and restrictions imposed on trade with other European Union members. The company is also susceptible to high volatility related to end-market headwinds in environmental health and safety solutions.”

Other research analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Verisk Analytics from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 11th. BMO Capital Markets lifted their price target on shares of Verisk Analytics from $83.00 to $91.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research note on Thursday, November 2nd. Credit Suisse Group boosted their price objective on shares of Verisk Analytics from $85.00 to $92.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Thursday, November 2nd. Morgan Stanley lifted their target price on shares of Verisk Analytics from $82.00 to $83.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a report on Monday, October 23rd. Finally, SunTrust Banks reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $85.00 price objective on shares of Verisk Analytics in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $93.36.

Shares of Verisk Analytics (NASDAQ VRSK) traded up $0.70 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $98.90. 1,090,000 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 560,355. The company has a quick ratio of 0.45, a current ratio of 0.45 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.36. The firm has a market capitalization of $16,172.75, a PE ratio of 30.69, a P/E/G ratio of 3.21 and a beta of 0.80. Verisk Analytics has a 52-week low of $75.60 and a 52-week high of $99.09.

Verisk Analytics (NASDAQ:VRSK) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 31st. The business services provider reported $0.84 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.78 by $0.06. The firm had revenue of $549.10 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $527.97 million. Verisk Analytics had a net margin of 22.09% and a return on equity of 36.91%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 10.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.84 earnings per share. equities analysts forecast that Verisk Analytics will post 3.17 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other Verisk Analytics news, EVP Kenneth E. Thompson sold 80,207 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.13, for a total value of $6,828,021.91. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 107,264 shares in the company, valued at approximately $9,131,384.32. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Kenneth E. Thompson sold 69,793 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, October 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.08, for a total transaction of $5,937,988.44. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 72,815 shares in the company, valued at $6,195,100.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders purchased 22,978 shares of company stock worth $2,098,817 and sold 264,946 shares worth $23,292,843. 3.41% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Advisory Services Network LLC lifted its holdings in Verisk Analytics by 300.5% in the 2nd quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 1,690 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $143,000 after purchasing an additional 1,268 shares in the last quarter. Perigon Wealth Management LLC lifted its holdings in Verisk Analytics by 61.2% in the 2nd quarter. Perigon Wealth Management LLC now owns 1,763 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $149,000 after purchasing an additional 669 shares in the last quarter. BB&T Investment Services Inc. purchased a new position in Verisk Analytics in the 2nd quarter valued at about $153,000. Capstone Investment Advisors Netherlands B.V. purchased a new position in Verisk Analytics in the 2nd quarter valued at about $161,000. Finally, Bank of Nova Scotia Trust Co. purchased a new position in Verisk Analytics in the 3rd quarter valued at about $164,000. Institutional investors own 92.91% of the company’s stock.

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About Verisk Analytics

Verisk Analytics, Inc is a data analytics provider serving customers in insurance, natural resources and financial services. The Company operates through two segments: Risk Assessment and Decision Analytics. Its Risk Assessment segment serves its property and casualty insurance customers and focuses on prediction of loss, selection and pricing of risk, and compliance with their reporting requirements in each United States state in which they operate.

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