Shares of AeroVironment, Inc. (NASDAQ:AVAV) reached a new 52-week high during trading on Wednesday following a better than expected earnings announcement. The company traded as high as $46.45 and last traded at $46.48, with a volume of 2,110,963 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $39.35.

The aerospace company reported ($0.19) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.34) by $0.15. The firm had revenue of $43.80 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $42.44 million. AeroVironment had a return on equity of 33.53% and a net margin of 24.29%. The company’s revenue was up 21.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned ($0.51) earnings per share.

A number of equities research analysts have issued reports on the company. Canaccord Genuity upped their target price on AeroVironment from $35.00 to $40.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday. Jefferies Group LLC upped their target price on AeroVironment to $37.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday. Robert W. Baird reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $35.00 target price on shares of AeroVironment in a research report on Monday. BidaskClub cut AeroVironment from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 16th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies cut AeroVironment from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and upped their target price for the stock from $30.00 to $35.00 in a research report on Monday, July 3rd. Eight investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $37.80.

In other news, VP Kenneth D. Karklin sold 735 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $39.57, for a total value of $29,083.95. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 9,437 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $373,422.09. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Timothy E. Conver sold 32,800 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $39.17, for a total value of $1,284,776.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 69,500 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,722,315. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 79,497 shares of company stock valued at $3,034,461 over the last three months. 11.00% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Sei Investments Co. boosted its stake in AeroVironment by 1.8% in the second quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 3,450 shares of the aerospace company’s stock valued at $132,000 after buying an additional 61 shares in the last quarter. Mason Street Advisors LLC boosted its stake in AeroVironment by 7.0% in the first quarter. Mason Street Advisors LLC now owns 4,813 shares of the aerospace company’s stock valued at $135,000 after buying an additional 316 shares in the last quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. boosted its stake in AeroVironment by 0.8% in the first quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 4,860 shares of the aerospace company’s stock valued at $136,000 after buying an additional 38 shares in the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue raised its position in shares of AeroVironment by 78.6% in the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 4,073 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $155,000 after buying an additional 1,793 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan raised its position in shares of AeroVironment by 3.2% in the second quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan now owns 4,850 shares of the aerospace company’s stock worth $185,000 after buying an additional 150 shares during the last quarter. 77.55% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

The company’s 50-day moving average price is $38.28 and its 200 day moving average price is $31.67. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.08 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 86.15 and a beta of 1.31.

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AeroVironment Company Profile

AeroVironment, Inc designs, develops, produces, supports and operates a portfolio of products and services for government agencies, businesses and consumers. The Company operates through two segments: Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), which focuses primarily on the design, development, production, support and operation of UAS and tactical missile systems that provide situational awareness, multi-band communications, force protection and other mission effects, and Efficient Energy Systems (EES), which focuses primarily on the design, development, production, marketing, support and operation of electric energy systems.

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