Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA) Trading 11.2% Higher

Ulta Beauty Inc (NASDAQ:ULTA) traded up 11.2% during trading on Wednesday . The company traded as high as $179.15 and last traded at $197.50, 103,315 shares traded hands during trading. A decline of 94% from the average session volume of 1,635,849 shares. The stock had previously closed at $177.59.

A number of equities research analysts have commented on the stock. Telsey Advisory Group restated an “outperform” rating on shares of Ulta Beauty in a research note on Monday, March 9th. Morgan Stanley cut their price objective on shares of Ulta Beauty from $275.00 to $250.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a report on Tuesday, March 17th. Goldman Sachs Group raised shares of Ulta Beauty from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price objective for the company from $285.00 to $307.00 in a report on Monday, February 3rd. Cfra cut their price objective on shares of Ulta Beauty from $340.00 to $240.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Friday, March 13th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies cut their price objective on shares of Ulta Beauty from $250.00 to $228.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a report on Monday, December 2nd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and fifteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $264.21.

The company has a quick ratio of 0.67, a current ratio of 1.81 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89. The firm’s 50 day simple moving average is $247.33 and its 200 day simple moving average is $247.98. The company has a market capitalization of $10.15 billion, a PE ratio of 15.53, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.88 and a beta of 1.10.

Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, March 12th. The specialty retailer reported $3.89 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $3.73 by $0.16. The company had revenue of $2.31 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.29 billion. Ulta Beauty had a net margin of 9.54% and a return on equity of 36.75%. Ulta Beauty’s quarterly revenue was up 8.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $3.61 earnings per share. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that Ulta Beauty Inc will post 12.64 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Ulta Beauty declared that its board has approved a stock repurchase program on Thursday, March 12th that permits the company to buyback $1.60 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the specialty retailer to repurchase up to 12.7% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are typically a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Whittier Trust Co. boosted its stake in Ulta Beauty by 4,100.0% during the fourth quarter. Whittier Trust Co. now owns 126 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $32,000 after buying an additional 123 shares during the period. Quantbot Technologies LP purchased a new position in Ulta Beauty during the fourth quarter worth $32,000. Ironwood Wealth Management LLC. boosted its stake in Ulta Beauty by 2,316.7% during the fourth quarter. Ironwood Wealth Management LLC. now owns 145 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $37,000 after buying an additional 139 shares during the period. Great Diamond Partners LLC purchased a new position in Ulta Beauty during the fourth quarter worth $40,000. Finally, Kistler Tiffany Companies LLC bought a new stake in shares of Ulta Beauty during the fourth quarter worth $41,000. 88.44% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA)

Ulta Beauty, Inc operates as a beauty retailer in the United States. The company's stores offer cosmetics, fragrances, skincare and haircare products, bath and body products, and salon styling tools; salon services, including hair, skin, makeup, and brow services; and others, including nail products and accessories.

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