Dillard’s (NYSE:DDS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Friday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Dillard’s has fared better than the industry year to date, owing to a robust earnings surprise trend. While the company reported in-line earnings in first-quarter fiscal 2019, the bottom line beat estimates in five of the last seven quarters. Though the top line missed estimates, it improved year over year, driven by strong performance across most categories. However, the bottom line declined year over year due to higher markdowns, which also impacted margins. Consolidated gross margin witnessed steeper decline compared with retail operations mainly due to increased markdowns. Nonetheless, the company’s efforts to capitalize on growth opportunities in physical stores and e-commerce bode well. Its strategy of offering fashion-forward and trendy products acts as a catalyst for attracting more customers. Its focus on boosting productivity, enhancing domestic operations and developing omni-channel should strengthen customer base.”

A number of other research firms have also recently issued reports on DDS. TheStreet upgraded shares of Dillard’s from a “c+” rating to a “b” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 27th. Deutsche Bank decreased their price target on shares of Dillard’s from $56.00 to $53.00 and set a “sell” rating for the company in a report on Thursday. ValuEngine cut shares of Dillard’s from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday. Wedbush restated an “underperform” rating and set a $54.00 price target (down from $65.00) on shares of Dillard’s in a report on Thursday. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut shares of Dillard’s from a “neutral” rating to an “underweight” rating and reduced their target price for the company from $68.00 to $57.00 in a research note on Monday, March 4th. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and three have assigned a hold rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Sell” and an average price target of $61.14.

DDS stock traded up $1.07 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $57.81. 374,380 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 347,147. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.34, a current ratio of 1.90 and a quick ratio of 0.26. Dillard’s has a 52 week low of $55.01 and a 52 week high of $98.75. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.67 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.45, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.12 and a beta of 0.88.

Dillard’s (NYSE:DDS) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 15th. The company reported $2.77 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.88 by ($0.11). Dillard’s had a net margin of 2.62% and a return on equity of 9.79%. The firm had revenue of $1.47 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.49 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $2.89 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up .5% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts expect that Dillard’s will post 5.74 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In related news, VP Mike Litchford sold 1,060 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, April 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $73.81, for a total value of $78,238.60. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 1,932 shares in the company, valued at $142,600.92. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. 20.10% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in DDS. Norges Bank bought a new stake in shares of Dillard’s in the fourth quarter valued at about $23,247,000. Marshall Wace LLP bought a new stake in shares of Dillard’s in the first quarter valued at about $12,535,000. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board lifted its stake in shares of Dillard’s by 120.4% in the fourth quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 248,819 shares of the company’s stock valued at $15,005,000 after buying an additional 135,900 shares during the period. Renaissance Technologies LLC bought a new stake in shares of Dillard’s in the first quarter valued at about $6,309,000. Finally, Trexquant Investment LP bought a new stake in shares of Dillard’s in the first quarter valued at about $3,754,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 89.71% of the company’s stock.

About Dillard’s

Dillard's, Inc operates retail department stores primarily in the Southeastern, Southwestern, and Midwestern areas of the United States. The company's stores offer a selection of merchandise, including fashion apparel for women, men, and children; accessories; cosmetics; home furnishings; and other consumer goods.

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Analyst Recommendations for Dillard`s (NYSE:DDS)

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