Artisan Partners LP recently announced the acquisition of new stake in Liberty Global plc (NASDAQ:LBTYA). The institutional investor has increased its shareholding in the Communication Services company by 1.00% to 12.76 million shares with purchase of 0.13 million shares. This fresh investment now brings its stake to 7.42% valued currently at $261.45 million. In addition, Luxor Capital Group LP raised its holdings by 2.84 million to 5.57 million shares. And Norges Bank Investment Management has lifted its position by 62.44% or 1.87 million shares – to 4.87 million shares.
With over 2.08 million Liberty Global plc (LBTYA) shares trading Tuesday and a closing price of $18.26 on the day, the dollar volume was approximately $38.01 million. The shares have shown a negative half year performance of -7.82% and its price on 03/14/23 gained nearly 0.27%. Currently, there are 459.31M common shares owned by the public and among those 419.33M shares have been available to trade.
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An analysis of what Wall Street brokers have to say about the expected price targets for this stock gives us this picture: 16 analysts who have offered their price forecasts for LBTYA have a consensus price objective of $28.46. The analysts have set the share’s price value over the next 12 months at a high of $50.00 and a low of $20.00. The average price target is 36.44% above its recent price level and an upside to the estimated low will see the stock gain 8.7% over that period. But an upside of 63.48% will see the stock hit the forecast high price target while median target price for the stock is $26.00.
Insiders at the company have transacted a total of 88 times over the past 12 months, according to data filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). 52 of these insider trades were purchases, accounting for 686,374 shares. Insider sales of the common stock occurred on 36 occasions, with total insider shares sold totaling 478,350 shares.
The top 3 mutual fund holders in Liberty Global plc are Artisan International Value Fund, Oakmark International Fund, and Dodge & Cox International Stock F. Artisan International Value Fund owns 16.2 million shares of the company’s stock, all valued at over $332.02 million. The company bought an additional 0.48 million shares recently to bring their total holdings to about 9.43% of the shares outstanding. Oakmark International Fund bought 0.37 million shares to see its total holdings expand to 13.21 million shares valued at over $270.57 million and representing 7.68% of the shares outstanding. Dodge & Cox International Stock F now owns shares totaling to 2.68% of the shares outstanding.
Shares of Liberty Global plc (NASDAQ: LBTYA) opened at $18.49, up $0.28 from a prior closing price of $18.21. However, the script later moved the day high at 18.72, up 0.27%. The company’s stock has a 5-day price change of -5.14% and -4.05% over the past three months. LBTYA shares are trading -3.54% year to date (YTD), with the 12-month market performance down to -24.61% lower. It has a 12-month low price of $15.22 and touched a high of $26.47 over the same period. LBTYA has an average intraday trading volume of 1.51 million shares. The stock is trading above its simple moving averages at the SMA20, SMA50, and SMA200, as the current price level is off by -9.65%, -11.67%, and -8.71% respectively.
Institutional ownership of Liberty Global plc (NASDAQ: LBTYA) shares accounts for 91.40% of the company’s 459.31M shares outstanding. Mutual fund holders own 41.21%, while other institutional holders and individual stakeholders account for 52.69% and 17.11% respectively.
It has a market capitalization of $8.74B and a beta (3y monthly) value of 1.27. The stock’s trailing 12-month PE ratio is 55.84, while the earnings-per-share (ttm) stands at $0.33. Price movements for the stock have been influenced by the stock’s volatility, which stands at 2.60% over the week and 2.74% over the month.
Analysts forecast that Liberty Global plc (LBTYA) will achieve an EPS of -$0.11 for the current quarter, $0 for the next quarter and -$0.35 for 2023. The lowest estimate earnings-per-share for the quarter is -$0.35 while analysts give the company a high EPS estimate of $0.13. Comparatively, EPS for the current quarter was $1.15 a year ago. Earnings per share for the fiscal year are expected to decrease by -94.90%, and -111.10% over the next financial year.
If you are looking to buy this stock, then you may note that the average analyst recommendation by 16 brokerage firm advisors rate Liberty Global plc (LBTYA) as a “Moderate Buy” at a consensus score of 2.20. Specifically, 10 Wall Street analysts polled rate the stock as a buy, while 6 of the 16 advise that investors “hold,” and 0 rated it as a “Sell.”
Looking at the support for the LBTYA, a number of firms have released research notes about the stock. Bernstein stated their Mkt Perform rating for the stock in a research note on January 12, 2023, with the firm’s price target at $23. BofA Securities was of a view on December 05, 2022 that the stock is Neutral, while JP Morgan gave the stock Neutral rating on December 01, 2022, issuing a price target of $23. Citigroup on their part issued Neutral rating on October 14, 2022.
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