Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Alliance Data Systems (NYSE:ADS) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report issued on Friday morning. Zacks Investment Research currently has $296.00 price objective on the business services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Alliance Data remains well-positioned for growth from significant opportunities owing to the current trend in consumer-based businesses, shifting their marketing spends to data-driven marketing strategies. It has made several strategic acquisitions to grow inorganically. Solid receivables growth in Card Services along with strength in LoyaltyOne and Epsilon segments should continue to drive top-line growth. For 2017, core EPS is expected at $18.10 on $7.8 billion revenues and for 2018, core EPS is projected at $21.50 on revenues of $8.7 billion. However, increasing expenses and dependence on limited clients for revenues, raise concerns. Shares of Alliance Data have underperformed the industry in a year. It is set to release fourth quarter results on Jan 25. A Zacks Rank #2 increases the predictive power of a beat, but combined with the Earnings ESP of -0.94%, makes prediction difficult.”

A number of other equities analysts also recently commented on ADS. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reiterated a buy rating and issued a $300.00 price target on shares of Alliance Data Systems in a research note on Friday, October 6th. BMO Capital Markets reissued a hold rating and issued a $235.00 target price on shares of Alliance Data Systems in a report on Wednesday, October 18th. SunTrust Banks reissued a buy rating and issued a $310.00 target price on shares of Alliance Data Systems in a report on Friday, October 20th. Oppenheimer set a $208.00 target price on shares of Alliance Data Systems and gave the stock a sell rating in a report on Thursday, October 19th. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Alliance Data Systems from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Saturday, October 21st. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $266.56.

Alliance Data Systems (NYSE ADS) traded up $0.71 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $264.76. The company had a trading volume of 451,200 shares, compared to its average volume of 524,100. The firm has a market capitalization of $14,560.00, a P/E ratio of 28.08, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.95 and a beta of 1.79. Alliance Data Systems has a fifty-two week low of $209.00 and a fifty-two week high of $266.25. The company has a quick ratio of 2.09, a current ratio of 2.11 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 9.53.

Alliance Data Systems (NYSE:ADS) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The business services provider reported $5.35 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $4.80 by $0.55. The business had revenue of $1.91 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.97 billion. Alliance Data Systems had a return on equity of 62.95% and a net margin of 7.09%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm earned $4.74 earnings per share. analysts expect that Alliance Data Systems will post 17.08 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, December 19th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, November 14th were issued a dividend of $0.52 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, November 13th. This represents a $2.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.79%. Alliance Data Systems’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 22.06%.

In other news, CFO Charles L. Horn sold 2,128 shares of Alliance Data Systems stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, November 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $235.00, for a total transaction of $500,080.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Insiders own 2.60% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Green Square Capital LLC raised its holdings in shares of Alliance Data Systems by 0.3% during the second quarter. Green Square Capital LLC now owns 3,054 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $784,000 after buying an additional 8 shares during the last quarter. Citizens Financial Group Inc RI increased its stake in shares of Alliance Data Systems by 2.2% during the second quarter. Citizens Financial Group Inc RI now owns 909 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $233,000 after acquiring an additional 20 shares during the period. Suntrust Banks Inc. increased its stake in shares of Alliance Data Systems by 1.7% during the second quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 2,240 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $574,000 after acquiring an additional 37 shares during the period. Riverhead Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Alliance Data Systems by 3.8% during the second quarter. Riverhead Capital Management LLC now owns 2,376 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $610,000 after acquiring an additional 87 shares during the period. Finally, Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Alliance Data Systems by 1.1% during the second quarter. Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management LLC now owns 9,299 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $2,387,000 after acquiring an additional 101 shares during the period. 94.57% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

TRADEMARK VIOLATION WARNING: “Alliance Data Systems (ADS) Upgraded to Buy at Zacks Investment Research” was first published by Watch List News and is owned by of Watch List News. If you are accessing this piece of content on another website, it was copied illegally and republished in violation of U.S. & international trademark & copyright law. The correct version of this piece of content can be accessed at https://www.watchlistnews.com/alliance-data-systems-ads-upgraded-to-buy-at-zacks-investment-research/1798563.html.

Alliance Data Systems Company Profile

Alliance Data Systems Corporation is a provider of data-driven marketing and loyalty solutions serving consumer-based businesses in a range of industries. The Company offers a portfolio of integrated outsourced marketing solutions, including customer loyalty programs, database marketing services, end-to-end marketing services, analytics and creative services, direct marketing services, and private label and co-brand retail credit card programs.

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on Alliance Data Systems (ADS)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Analyst Recommendations for Alliance Data Systems (NYSE:ADS)

Receive News & Ratings for Alliance Data Systems Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Alliance Data Systems and related companies with Analyst Ratings Network's FREE daily email newsletter.