Choice Hotels (NYSE:CHH) Rating Increased to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Choice Hotels (NYSE:CHH) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued on Monday, May 14th. The brokerage currently has a $91.00 target price on the stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective suggests a potential upside of 13.96% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Choice Hotels Int’l. is one of the largest hotel franchise companies in the world with hotels, inns, all-suite hotels and resorts open and under development in countries across the globe under the brand names Comfort, Quality, Clarion, Sleep Inn, Rodeway Inn, Econo Lodge and MainStay Suites. “

CHH has been the topic of a number of other reports. Barclays upped their price objective on shares of Choice Hotels from $67.00 to $75.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 21st. Wells Fargo & Co lowered shares of Choice Hotels from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $88.00 price objective on the stock. in a research note on Thursday, May 10th. Deutsche Bank upped their price objective on shares of Choice Hotels from $83.30 to $85.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, May 10th. UBS raised shares of Choice Hotels from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Monday, February 26th. Finally, SunTrust Banks increased their target price on shares of Choice Hotels to $82.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 21st. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating, one has given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. Choice Hotels has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $82.00.

NYSE:CHH opened at $79.85 on Monday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of -3.06, a quick ratio of 0.86 and a current ratio of 0.86. Choice Hotels has a 52 week low of $59.60 and a 52 week high of $85.35. The firm has a market capitalization of $4.55 billion, a PE ratio of 27.73, a PEG ratio of 2.01 and a beta of 1.10.

Choice Hotels (NYSE:CHH) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, May 10th. The company reported $0.67 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.60 by $0.07. Choice Hotels had a net margin of 10.92% and a negative return on equity of 74.98%. The company had revenue of $209.39 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $215.75 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.51 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 10.9% on a year-over-year basis. equities research analysts forecast that Choice Hotels will post 3.69 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, Director William L. Jews sold 3,250 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, March 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.26, for a total transaction of $254,345.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 37,799 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,958,149.74. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Simone Wu sold 10,203 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $78.88, for a total transaction of $804,812.64. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 30,298 shares in the company, valued at $2,389,906.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 62,795 shares of company stock worth $5,057,823. 24.38% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in CHH. Three Peaks Capital Management LLC acquired a new position in Choice Hotels during the first quarter worth $110,000. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank raised its holdings in Choice Hotels by 43.5% during the fourth quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 2,311 shares of the company’s stock worth $179,000 after buying an additional 700 shares during the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue acquired a new position in Choice Hotels during the fourth quarter worth $186,000. Franklin Resources Inc. acquired a new position in Choice Hotels during the fourth quarter worth $202,000. Finally, Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB acquired a new position in Choice Hotels during the fourth quarter worth $221,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 51.68% of the company’s stock.

About Choice Hotels

Choice Hotels International, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a hotel franchisor worldwide. It operates through Hotel Franchising and SkyTouch Technology segments. The company franchises lodging properties under the brand names of Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality, Clarion, Sleep Inn, Econo Lodge, Rodeway Inn, MainStay Suites, Suburban Extended Stay Hotel, Cambria hotels & suites, and Ascend Hotel Collection.

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