Today, The Zacks Investment Research Upgraded Geo Group Inc. (GEO) to Buy

Today, The Zacks Investment Research Upgraded Geo Group Inc. (GEO) to Buy

Geo Group Inc. (NYSE:GEO) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Tuesday. The brokerage currently has a $27.00 price target on the real estate investment trust’s stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price objective suggests a potential downside of 17.91% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “The GEO Group, Inc. is an equity real estate investment trust. It specializes in the design, development, financing and operation of correctional, detention and community reentry facilities. It has operations in the United States, Australia, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. The GEO Group, Inc. is headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida. “

GEO has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Canaccord Genuity reissued a “buy” rating and set a $28.00 target price on shares of Geo Group in a research report on Friday, September 30th. SunTrust Banks Inc. dropped their target price on shares of Geo Group from $38.00 to $32.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, September 1st. Finally, TheStreet downgraded shares of Geo Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 18th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $31.33.

Geo Group (NYSE:GEO) traded up 1.17% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, reaching $32.89. 347,192 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The company has a market capitalization of $2.44 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.05 and a beta of 1.03. Geo Group has a 52 week low of $16.26 and a 52 week high of $35.14. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $26.17 and its 200-day moving average price is $28.87.

Geo Group (NYSE:GEO) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, November 3rd. The real estate investment trust reported $0.59 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.75 by $0.16. The business had revenue of $554.40 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $567.16 million. Geo Group had a return on equity of 14.70% and a net margin of 6.78%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 18.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.90 EPS. On average, equities research analysts expect that Geo Group will post $2.92 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, November 10th. Shareholders of record on Monday, October 31st were issued a $0.65 dividend. This represents a $2.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 7.91%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, October 27th. Geo Group’s dividend payout ratio is presently 134.72%.

In related news, SVP Ann M. Schlarb purchased 1,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 1st. The stock was purchased at an average price of $19.51 per share, for a total transaction of $29,265.00. Following the acquisition, the senior vice president now directly owns 11,464 shares in the company, valued at $223,662.64. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 2.20% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Bloom Tree Partners LLC acquired a new position in Geo Group during the third quarter valued at approximately $38,048,000. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. boosted its position in Geo Group by 799.1% in the third quarter. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. now owns 1,617,889 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $38,473,000 after buying an additional 1,437,951 shares during the period. Prudential Financial Inc. boosted its position in Geo Group by 67.7% in the third quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 2,450,295 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $58,268,000 after buying an additional 989,395 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in Geo Group by 4.6% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 12,708,613 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $434,380,000 after buying an additional 555,282 shares during the period. Finally, BlackRock Fund Advisors boosted its position in Geo Group by 9.5% in the third quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 5,777,188 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $137,382,000 after buying an additional 503,226 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 88.16% of the company’s stock.

Geo Group Company Profile

The GEO Group, Inc is a real estate investment trust (REIT) specializing in the ownership, leasing and management of correctional, detention and re-entry facilities and the provision of community-based services and youth services in the United States, Australia, South Africa, the United Kingdom and Canada.

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