Principal Financial Group Inc. Lowers Stake in Acuity Brands, Inc. (NYSE:AYI)

Principal Financial Group Inc. reduced its holdings in shares of Acuity Brands, Inc. (NYSE:AYIGet Rating) by 8.0% in the second quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The fund owned 136,129 shares of the electronics maker’s stock after selling 11,853 shares during the period. Principal Financial Group Inc.’s holdings in Acuity Brands were worth $20,969,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other large investors also recently bought and sold shares of AYI. Investors Asset Management of Georgia Inc. GA ADV purchased a new position in Acuity Brands during the 2nd quarter valued at about $77,000. SeaCrest Wealth Management LLC bought a new stake in Acuity Brands during the 2nd quarter valued at about $81,000. Zions Bancorporation N.A. increased its stake in Acuity Brands by 2,926.7% during the 1st quarter. Zions Bancorporation N.A. now owns 454 shares of the electronics maker’s stock valued at $86,000 after purchasing an additional 439 shares in the last quarter. Sycomore Asset Management increased its stake in Acuity Brands by 23.3% during the 1st quarter. Sycomore Asset Management now owns 766 shares of the electronics maker’s stock valued at $151,000 after purchasing an additional 145 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Quent Capital LLC increased its stake in Acuity Brands by 33.1% during the 1st quarter. Quent Capital LLC now owns 796 shares of the electronics maker’s stock valued at $151,000 after purchasing an additional 198 shares in the last quarter. 94.70% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Acuity Brands Stock Performance

AYI opened at $187.53 on Tuesday. The company has a current ratio of 2.00, a quick ratio of 1.34 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.26. The company has a market cap of $6.03 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.83, a PEG ratio of 1.49 and a beta of 1.54. The company’s 50 day moving average is $172.35 and its 200 day moving average is $170.33. Acuity Brands, Inc. has a 12-month low of $142.71 and a 12-month high of $220.97.

Acuity Brands (NYSE:AYIGet Rating) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 4th. The electronics maker reported $3.95 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $3.61 by $0.34. The company had revenue of $1.11 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.08 billion. Acuity Brands had a net margin of 9.59% and a return on equity of 20.76%. The firm’s revenue was up 11.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $3.05 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts predict that Acuity Brands, Inc. will post 12.47 EPS for the current year.

Acuity Brands Announces Dividend

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Investors of record on Monday, October 17th were issued a $0.13 dividend. This represents a $0.52 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.28%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, October 14th. Acuity Brands’s payout ratio is 4.67%.

Analyst Ratings Changes

AYI has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. Robert W. Baird raised their price objective on shares of Acuity Brands from $190.00 to $200.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 5th. Wells Fargo & Company raised their price objective on shares of Acuity Brands from $181.00 to $188.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 5th. Cowen reduced their price target on shares of Acuity Brands from $225.00 to $208.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, October 5th. Oppenheimer reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $210.00 price target on shares of Acuity Brands in a research note on Tuesday, August 30th. Finally, Cowen reduced their price target on shares of Acuity Brands from $225.00 to $208.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, October 5th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat.com, Acuity Brands presently has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus price target of $205.43.

Acuity Brands Profile

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Acuity Brands, Inc provides lighting and building management solutions in North America and internationally. The company operates through two segments, Acuity Brands Lighting and Lighting Controls (ABL); and the Intelligent Spaces Group (ISG). The ABL segment provides commercial, architectural, and specialty lighting solutions, as well as lighting controls and components for various indoor and outdoor applications under the Lithonia Lighting, Holophane, Peerless, Gotham, Mark Architectural Lighting, Winona Lighting, Juno, Indy, Aculux, Healthcare Lighting, Hydrel, American Electric Lighting, Sunoptics, eldoLED, nLight, Sensor Switch, IOTA, A-Light, Cyclone, Eureka, Lumniaire LED, Luminis, Dark to Light, RELOC Wiring Solutions, and OPTOTRONIC brands.

See Also

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Acuity Brands (NYSE:AYI)

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