Manchester United (NYSE:MANU) Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research to Buy

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Manchester United (NYSE:MANU) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note released on Thursday, Zacks.com reports. They currently have $18.00 price target on the stock.

According to Zacks, “Manchester United PLC operates a professional sports team. The Company manages the soccer team and all affiliated club activities of the Manchester United Football Club that includes the media network, foundation, fan zone, news and sports features, and team merchandise. Manchester United PLC is based in Manchester, United Kingdom. “

Separately, BNP Paribas began coverage on Manchester United in a research note on Friday, November 13th. They issued a neutral rating and a $17.00 price objective on the stock.

Shares of NYSE:MANU opened at $16.84 on Thursday. The company’s 50-day moving average is $16.27 and its 200 day moving average is $15.29. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.47, a quick ratio of 0.49 and a current ratio of 0.50. The company has a market capitalization of $655.73 million, a P/E ratio of -39.16 and a beta of 0.89. Manchester United has a fifty-two week low of $12.06 and a fifty-two week high of $20.45.

Manchester United (NYSE:MANU) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 12th. The company reported ($0.15) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.06) by ($0.09). Manchester United had a negative net margin of 11.17% and a negative return on equity of 11.89%. The firm had revenue of $109.00 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $166.55 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.02 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was down 19.5% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, research analysts predict that Manchester United will post 0.04 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a Semi-Annual dividend, which was paid on Thursday, January 7th. Investors of record on Monday, November 30th were paid a $0.09 dividend. This represents a yield of 1.1%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, November 27th. Manchester United’s dividend payout ratio is currently -180.00%.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in MANU. California Public Employees Retirement System increased its position in shares of Manchester United by 10.3% during the second quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 52,723 shares of the company’s stock valued at $835,000 after buying an additional 4,922 shares during the period. Gabelli Funds LLC increased its position in shares of Manchester United by 1.0% in the second quarter. Gabelli Funds LLC now owns 100,000 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,583,000 after purchasing an additional 1,000 shares during the last quarter. Alyeska Investment Group L.P. increased its position in shares of Manchester United by 29.8% in the second quarter. Alyeska Investment Group L.P. now owns 260,249 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,120,000 after purchasing an additional 59,734 shares during the last quarter. River & Mercantile Asset Management LLP bought a new position in shares of Manchester United in the second quarter worth approximately $3,424,000. Finally, Engineers Gate Manager LP bought a new position in shares of Manchester United in the second quarter worth approximately $383,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 79.50% of the company’s stock.

About Manchester United

Manchester United plc, together with its subsidiaries, owns and operates a professional sports team in the United Kingdom. The company operates Manchester United Football Club, a professional football club. It develops marketing and sponsorship relationships with international and regional companies to leverage its brand.

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