DISH Network (NASDAQ:DISH) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Friday.

According to Zacks, “DISH’s efforts to diversify its business from being a pure-play satellite-TV operator to an Internet TV operator is expected to help it counter competitive threats from low-cost video streaming operators. Sling TV subscriber base is increasing, which is a positive for the company’s top-line growth. Moreover, DISH’s focus on acquiring and retaining subscribers that are profitable over the long term, is paying off. The company’s excellent customer service is improving retention. Further, DISH has ample wireless opportunities with its extensive portfolio of wireless spectrum, valued at around $40 billion. However, escalating programming and content expenses, retransmission fees and failure to strike any deal with wireless operators are major concerns. Shares have underperformed the industry in the past year.”

A number of other research firms have also recently commented on DISH. Macquarie reissued a “sell” rating and set a $30.00 target price on shares of DISH Network in a research report on Sunday, November 11th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. dropped their price target on shares of DISH Network to $40.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, November 8th. SunTrust Banks dropped their price target on shares of DISH Network to $35.00 and set a “hold” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, November 8th. Wolfe Research initiated coverage on shares of DISH Network in a research note on Friday, December 7th. They issued a “market perform” rating for the company. Finally, Morgan Stanley dropped their price target on shares of DISH Network from $39.00 to $37.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, December 6th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. DISH Network presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $39.07.

Shares of NASDAQ DISH traded down $0.46 during trading on Friday, reaching $28.18. 1,198,932 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 3,639,247. DISH Network has a twelve month low of $23.22 and a twelve month high of $49.78. The company has a current ratio of 0.62, a quick ratio of 0.56 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.67. The stock has a market cap of $13.22 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.09 and a beta of 1.39.

DISH Network (NASDAQ:DISH) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, November 7th. The company reported $0.82 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.67 by $0.15. DISH Network had a net margin of 19.01% and a return on equity of 20.26%. The business had revenue of $3.40 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.40 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.57 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 5.3% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, research analysts expect that DISH Network will post 2.92 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, insider James Defranco acquired 25,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 29th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $29.00 per share, for a total transaction of $725,000.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the insider now owns 1,248,529 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $36,207,341. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. In the last 90 days, insiders have acquired 215,000 shares of company stock worth $6,343,000. Corporate insiders own 49.20% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its holdings in shares of DISH Network by 5.0% during the 2nd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 619,596 shares of the company’s stock valued at $20,826,000 after purchasing an additional 29,668 shares in the last quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of DISH Network by 1.3% during the 2nd quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 517,875 shares of the company’s stock valued at $17,406,000 after purchasing an additional 6,880 shares during the last quarter. Glen Harbor Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in shares of DISH Network by 32.1% during the 2nd quarter. Glen Harbor Capital Management LLC now owns 26,146 shares of the company’s stock valued at $879,000 after purchasing an additional 6,358 shares during the last quarter. Raymond James & Associates lifted its holdings in shares of DISH Network by 30.1% in the 2nd quarter. Raymond James & Associates now owns 58,876 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,979,000 after acquiring an additional 13,619 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Voya Investment Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of DISH Network by 29.2% in the 2nd quarter. Voya Investment Management LLC now owns 104,984 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,529,000 after acquiring an additional 23,709 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 48.61% of the company’s stock.

About DISH Network

DISH Network Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides pay-TV services in the United States. The company operates in two segments, Pay-TV and Wireless. It offers video services under the DISH TV brand; and programming packages that include programming through national broadcast networks, local broadcast networks, and national and regional cable networks, as well as regional and specialty sports channels, premium movie channels, and Latino and international programming packages.

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