Accenture Plc (NYSE:ACN) Receives Average Recommendation of “Buy” from Analysts

Accenture Plc (NYSE:ACN) has been assigned a consensus rating of “Buy” from the twenty-five ratings firms that are covering the company, Marketbeat.com reports. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, seven have assigned a hold recommendation and fifteen have issued a buy recommendation on the company. The average twelve-month price target among analysts that have covered the stock in the last year is $212.18.

Several analysts have recently commented on the company. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “market perform” rating and issued a $220.00 target price on shares of Accenture in a research report on Friday, December 20th. Royal Bank of Canada raised their target price on Accenture to $220.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, December 20th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Barclays assumed coverage on Accenture in a research report on Friday, September 20th. They issued an “overweight” rating and a $228.00 target price for the company. UBS Group raised their target price on Accenture from $190.00 to $205.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, December 20th. Finally, Moffett Nathanson cut Accenture from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Tuesday, January 7th.

In related news, CEO Julie Spellman Sweet sold 12,961 shares of Accenture stock in a transaction on Thursday, October 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $185.69, for a total transaction of $2,406,728.09. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 22,702 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,215,534.38. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Ellyn Shook sold 4,688 shares of Accenture stock in a transaction on Monday, October 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $183.65, for a total value of $860,951.20. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 27,271 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,008,319.15. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 37,014 shares of company stock valued at $6,859,750. Insiders own 0.10% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Regal Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Accenture in the third quarter worth about $210,000. IHT Wealth Management LLC lifted its position in shares of Accenture by 11.4% in the third quarter. IHT Wealth Management LLC now owns 18,978 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock worth $3,651,000 after buying an additional 1,945 shares during the last quarter. Benjamin Edwards Inc. lifted its position in shares of Accenture by 11.0% in the third quarter. Benjamin Edwards Inc. now owns 614 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock worth $118,000 after buying an additional 61 shares during the last quarter. Advisors Capital Management LLC lifted its position in shares of Accenture by 6.4% in the second quarter. Advisors Capital Management LLC now owns 4,868 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock worth $899,000 after buying an additional 293 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Hilltop Holdings Inc. lifted its position in shares of Accenture by 5.8% in the second quarter. Hilltop Holdings Inc. now owns 2,261 shares of the information technology services provider’s stock worth $418,000 after buying an additional 123 shares during the last quarter. 73.65% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Shares of NYSE ACN traded up $0.22 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $209.20. The company had a trading volume of 2,577,180 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,389,665. The company has a current ratio of 1.39, a quick ratio of 1.39 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.17. The stock has a market cap of $132.38 billion, a PE ratio of 28.42, a P/E/G ratio of 2.57 and a beta of 1.05. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $206.74 and a two-hundred day moving average price of $195.73. Accenture has a 1-year low of $147.44 and a 1-year high of $213.25.

Accenture (NYSE:ACN) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, December 19th. The information technology services provider reported $2.09 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.99 by $0.10. The business had revenue of $11.36 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $11.15 billion. Accenture had a return on equity of 33.35% and a net margin of 11.06%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 7.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.96 EPS. On average, research analysts expect that Accenture will post 7.82 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a semi-annual dividend, which will be paid on Friday, February 14th. Investors of record on Thursday, January 16th will be given a dividend of $0.80 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, January 15th. This represents a yield of 1.5%. Accenture’s payout ratio is 43.48%.

About Accenture

Accenture plc provides consulting, technology, and outsourcing services in Ireland and internationally. Its Communications, Media & Technology segment provides professional services that help clients accelerate and deliver digital transformation, develop industry-specific solutions, and enhance efficiencies and business results for communications, media, high tech, software, and platform companies.

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Analyst Recommendations for Accenture (NYSE:ACN)

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