Laureate Education (NASDAQ:LAUR) Stock Price Up 9.9%

Laureate Education Inc (NASDAQ:LAUR) shares rose 9.9% during trading on Thursday . The stock traded as high as $17.09 and last traded at $16.97, approximately 2,894,176 shares traded hands during mid-day trading. An increase of 258% from the average daily volume of 807,972 shares. The stock had previously closed at $15.44.

LAUR has been the subject of several research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered Laureate Education from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday. TheStreet raised Laureate Education from a “c” rating to a “b-” rating in a report on Friday, April 26th. Barrington Research reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and issued a $22.00 price objective (up previously from $20.00) on shares of Laureate Education in a report on Friday. Finally, BMO Capital Markets lifted their price objective on Laureate Education from $18.00 to $20.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $19.20.

The company has a market cap of $3.47 billion, a P/E ratio of -594.00, a PEG ratio of 2.01 and a beta of 0.27. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.30, a current ratio of 0.87 and a quick ratio of 0.87. The stock’s 50-day simple moving average is $16.00.

Laureate Education (NASDAQ:LAUR) last released its earnings results on Thursday, August 8th. The company reported $0.46 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.57 by ($0.11). The company had revenue of $1 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $998.46 million. Laureate Education had a net margin of 11.00% and a return on equity of 4.71%. Laureate Education’s revenue for the quarter was down 1.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.00 earnings per share. Research analysts forecast that Laureate Education Inc will post 0.64 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In related news, CEO Paula R. Singer sold 15,000 shares of Laureate Education stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $16.62, for a total transaction of $249,300.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 39,970 shares in the company, valued at $664,301.40. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Paula R. Singer sold 3,348 shares of Laureate Education stock in a transaction on Monday, June 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $16.12, for a total value of $53,969.76. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 36,622 shares in the company, valued at $590,346.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 11,681,863 shares of company stock worth $178,760,473 over the last quarter. 2.97% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio lifted its position in shares of Laureate Education by 45.5% in the fourth quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 2,352 shares of the company’s stock valued at $36,000 after acquiring an additional 735 shares in the last quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. purchased a new position in shares of Laureate Education in the first quarter valued at about $235,000. FMR LLC lifted its position in shares of Laureate Education by 19.4% in the first quarter. FMR LLC now owns 13,450,964 shares of the company’s stock valued at $201,362,000 after acquiring an additional 2,184,985 shares in the last quarter. SeaTown Holdings Pte. Ltd. purchased a new position in shares of Laureate Education in the first quarter valued at about $1,647,000. Finally, Spark Investment Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Laureate Education in the first quarter valued at about $3,708,000. Institutional investors own 44.71% of the company’s stock.

About Laureate Education (NASDAQ:LAUR)

Laureate Education, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides higher education programs and services to students through a network of universities and higher education institutions. It operates through five segments: Brazil, Mexico, Andean, Rest of World, and Online & Partnerships. The company offers a range of undergraduate and graduate degree programs primarily in the areas of business and management, medicine and health sciences, and engineering and information technology through campus-based, online, and hybrid programs.

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