Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT – Get Rating) has been assigned an average recommendation of “Buy” from the twenty-nine research firms that are currently covering the firm, Marketbeat reports. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and fifteen have given a buy recommendation to the company. The average 12-month price objective among brokerages that have covered the stock in the last year is $155.00.
Several analysts recently weighed in on AMAT shares. UBS Group dropped their price target on Applied Materials from $130.00 to $120.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a report on Friday, May 20th. The Goldman Sachs Group dropped their price target on Applied Materials from $151.00 to $133.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Monday, May 23rd. Susquehanna reissued a “hold” rating and set a $160.00 price target on shares of Applied Materials in a report on Monday, February 14th. B. Riley dropped their price target on Applied Materials from $145.00 to $140.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Monday, May 16th. Finally, Mizuho dropped their price target on Applied Materials from $180.00 to $160.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Friday, May 20th.
A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of AMAT. Norges Bank bought a new stake in Applied Materials during the 4th quarter worth $1,146,885,000. Capital World Investors grew its position in Applied Materials by 21.5% during the 1st quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 33,850,576 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $4,461,584,000 after acquiring an additional 5,980,777 shares during the last quarter. Cowa LLC bought a new stake in Applied Materials during the 1st quarter worth $76,000. Vulcan Value Partners LLC grew its position in Applied Materials by 97.5% during the 3rd quarter. Vulcan Value Partners LLC now owns 6,067,153 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $781,025,000 after acquiring an additional 2,995,539 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Capital International Investors grew its position in shares of Applied Materials by 10.5% in the 4th quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 23,268,369 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock valued at $3,661,525,000 after buying an additional 2,209,223 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 77.90% of the company’s stock.
Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT – Get Rating) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, May 19th. The manufacturing equipment provider reported $1.85 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.90 by ($0.05). Applied Materials had a return on equity of 57.17% and a net margin of 27.20%. The business had revenue of $6.25 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $6.35 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.63 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 11.9% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts predict that Applied Materials will post 7.54 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 15th. Investors of record on Thursday, August 25th will be given a dividend of $0.26 per share. This represents a $1.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.97%. Applied Materials’s dividend payout ratio is currently 13.87%.
Applied Materials announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase program on Friday, March 11th that permits the company to buyback $6.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the manufacturing equipment provider to reacquire up to 5.5% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.
Applied Materials Company Profile (Get Rating)
Applied Materials, Inc provides manufacturing equipment, services, and software to the semiconductor, display, and related industries. It operates through three segments: Semiconductor Systems, Applied Global Services, and Display and Adjacent Markets. The Semiconductor Systems segment develops, manufactures, and sells various manufacturing equipment that is used to fabricate semiconductor chips or integrated circuits.
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