Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Yelp Inc. (NYSE:YELP) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report report published on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Yelp, Inc. is a website engaged in providing information through online community offering social networking. It covers restaurants, shopping, nightlife, financial services, health and a variety of services. The company serves customers in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Switzerland and Belgium. Yelp, Inc. is headquartered in San Francisco, California. “

Several other brokerages also recently weighed in on YELP. Roth Capital set a $21.00 target price on shares of Yelp and gave the stock a sell rating in a research note on Monday, July 31st. B. Riley reaffirmed a neutral rating and set a $36.00 target price on shares of Yelp in a research note on Friday, August 4th. Barclays PLC reissued an equal weight rating and issued a $36.00 price objective (up from $28.00) on shares of Yelp in a research report on Friday, August 4th. Robert W. Baird increased their price objective on shares of Yelp from $37.00 to $44.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a research report on Friday, November 3rd. Finally, KeyCorp reissued a buy rating and issued a $54.00 price objective on shares of Yelp in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have assigned a hold rating and twenty have issued a buy rating to the stock. Yelp has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $43.37.

Shares of Yelp (NYSE:YELP) opened at $46.82 on Thursday. Yelp has a 52 week low of $26.93 and a 52 week high of $48.17. The firm has a market cap of $3,880.00, a P/E ratio of 212.82, a P/E/G ratio of 10.52 and a beta of 1.29.

Yelp (NYSE:YELP) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The local business review company reported $0.29 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of ($0.01) by $0.30. Yelp had a net margin of 2.31% and a return on equity of 2.20%. The firm had revenue of $222.40 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $220.75 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.22 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 19.4% on a year-over-year basis. analysts predict that Yelp will post 0.17 EPS for the current year.

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Yelp declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback plan on Thursday, August 3rd that authorizes the company to repurchase $200.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the local business review company to reacquire up to 7.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

In other Yelp news, COO Joseph R. Nachman sold 4,941 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $41.45, for a total transaction of $204,804.45. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 119,674 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,960,487.30. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Laurence Wilson sold 4,208 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $41.45, for a total transaction of $174,421.60. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 177,739 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $7,367,281.55. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 319,481 shares of company stock valued at $14,117,325 in the last quarter. Insiders own 10.10% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its holdings in Yelp by 4.1% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 5,935,362 shares of the local business review company’s stock valued at $178,180,000 after acquiring an additional 231,754 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in Yelp by 84.9% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 5,232,684 shares of the local business review company’s stock valued at $157,084,000 after acquiring an additional 2,403,240 shares in the last quarter. Prescott General Partners LLC increased its holdings in Yelp by 21.3% during the 2nd quarter. Prescott General Partners LLC now owns 3,851,774 shares of the local business review company’s stock valued at $115,630,000 after acquiring an additional 676,251 shares in the last quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD increased its holdings in Yelp by 38.7% during the 2nd quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD now owns 3,116,090 shares of the local business review company’s stock valued at $93,545,000 after acquiring an additional 868,890 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Fisher Asset Management LLC increased its holdings in Yelp by 17.7% during the 3rd quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 2,893,867 shares of the local business review company’s stock valued at $125,304,000 after acquiring an additional 434,574 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 85.66% of the company’s stock.

About Yelp

Yelp Inc (Yelp) connects people with local businesses by bringing ‘word of mouth’ online and providing a platform for businesses and consumers to engage and transact. The Company offers local business review sites. Yelp provides a platform for consumers to share their everyday local business experiences with other consumers by posting reviews, tips, photos and videos, and to engage directly with businesses, through reviews, its Request-A-Quote and Message the Business features, and by completing transactions on the Yelp Platform.

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Analyst Recommendations for Yelp (NYSE:YELP)

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