Facebook (FB) Upgraded to Buy by Nomura

Nomura upgraded shares of Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) from a neutral rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Monday morning, Marketbeat reports. They currently have $215.00 price objective on the social networking company’s stock, up from their previous price objective of $172.00.

A number of other research firms have also issued reports on FB. CIBC restated an outperform rating and set a $195.00 price objective (up previously from $185.00) on shares of Facebook in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. BidaskClub upgraded Facebook from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, March 7th. Jefferies Financial Group reiterated a buy rating and set a $200.00 price target (up previously from $180.00) on shares of Facebook in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. Rosenblatt Securities reiterated a buy rating and set a $212.00 price target (up previously from $206.00) on shares of Facebook in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. Finally, Citigroup reiterated a buy rating and set a $185.00 price target (up previously from $175.00) on shares of Facebook in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and forty have issued a buy rating to the company. Facebook has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $191.58.

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NASDAQ:FB opened at $173.37 on Monday. Facebook has a 12-month low of $123.02 and a 12-month high of $218.62. The company has a market cap of $492.69 billion, a P/E ratio of 22.90, a P/E/G ratio of 0.95 and a beta of 0.93.

Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 30th. The social networking company reported $2.38 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.18 by $0.20. Facebook had a return on equity of 27.51% and a net margin of 39.60%. The business had revenue of $16.91 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $16.40 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $1.44 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 30.4% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts forecast that Facebook will post 7.55 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other news, CAO Susan J.S. Taylor sold 1,442 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $162.02, for a total transaction of $233,632.84. Following the sale, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 1,569 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $254,209.38. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP Colin Stretch sold 750 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $171.21, for a total value of $128,407.50. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 93,930 shares in the company, valued at $16,081,755.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 335,711 shares of company stock valued at $50,668,068. Insiders own 16.25% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Mission Wealth Management LP raised its position in Facebook by 3.8% during the third quarter. Mission Wealth Management LP now owns 10,426 shares of the social networking company’s stock valued at $1,715,000 after buying an additional 386 shares during the period. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. raised its position in Facebook by 4.0% during the second quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 8,774,424 shares of the social networking company’s stock valued at $1,705,047,000 after buying an additional 337,909 shares during the period. Montrusco Bolton Investments Inc. raised its position in Facebook by 14.0% during the third quarter. Montrusco Bolton Investments Inc. now owns 106,851 shares of the social networking company’s stock valued at $17,525,000 after buying an additional 13,124 shares during the period. First American Bank acquired a new position in Facebook during the third quarter valued at $6,317,000. Finally, Rovida Advisors Inc. acquired a new position in Facebook during the third quarter valued at $18,714,000. 57.89% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About Facebook

Facebook, Inc provides various products to connect and share through mobile devices, personal computers, and other surfaces worldwide. The company's products include Facebook that enables people to connect, share, discover, and communicate with each other on mobile devices and personal computers; Instagram, a community for sharing photos, videos, and messages; Messenger, a messaging application for people to connect with friends, family, groups, and businesses across platforms and devices; and WhatsApp, a messaging application for use by people and businesses to communicate in a private way.

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