Palo Alto Networks’ (PANW) “Buy” Rating Reaffirmed at Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley restated their buy rating on shares of Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW) in a research note issued to investors on Friday, AnalystRatings.com reports. They currently have a $269.00 target price on the network technology company’s stock.

Other equities analysts have also issued research reports about the stock. OTR Global cut shares of Palo Alto Networks to a positive rating in a research note on Friday, May 8th. Northland Securities restated an outperform rating and issued a $285.00 price target (up previously from $274.00) on shares of Palo Alto Networks in a research report on Friday. Raymond James downgraded Palo Alto Networks from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a research report on Tuesday, February 25th. Dougherty & Co raised Palo Alto Networks from a neutral rating to a buy rating and set a $260.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group boosted their target price on Palo Alto Networks from $219.00 to $250.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Friday. Twelve research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty-four have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $254.48.

NYSE PANW traded up $8.43 on Friday, reaching $237.93. 4,098,348 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,345,703. Palo Alto Networks has a 12 month low of $125.47 and a 12 month high of $251.10. The company has a market cap of $22.88 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of -100.82 and a beta of 1.14. The firm’s fifty day simple moving average is $195.88 and its 200 day simple moving average is $214.24. The company has a quick ratio of 1.78, a current ratio of 1.78 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.13.

Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, May 21st. The network technology company reported $1.17 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.37) by $1.54. The business had revenue of $869.40 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $831.52 million. Palo Alto Networks had a negative return on equity of 5.65% and a negative net margin of 7.01%. The company’s revenue was up 19.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.31 earnings per share. As a group, equities research analysts forecast that Palo Alto Networks will post -0.77 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In related news, EVP Nir Zuk sold 12,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, April 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $165.75, for a total value of $1,989,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 838,699 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $139,014,359.25. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, Director John Donovan acquired 8,102 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, March 2nd. The stock was purchased at an average price of $185.35 per share, for a total transaction of $1,501,705.70. Following the acquisition, the director now directly owns 11,222 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,079,997.70. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 2.30% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in PANW. Cim Investment Mangement Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Palo Alto Networks in the 1st quarter valued at $408,000. APG Asset Management N.V. raised its holdings in Palo Alto Networks by 29.5% during the first quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 173,386 shares of the network technology company’s stock valued at $28,428,000 after buying an additional 39,467 shares in the last quarter. Eminence Capital LP bought a new position in Palo Alto Networks during the first quarter valued at about $87,267,000. Squarepoint Ops LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Palo Alto Networks in the first quarter worth about $371,000. Finally, Tower Research Capital LLC TRC acquired a new stake in shares of Palo Alto Networks in the first quarter worth about $405,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 77.99% of the company’s stock.

About Palo Alto Networks

Palo Alto Networks, Inc provides security platform solutions worldwide. The company provides firewall appliances and software; Panorama, a security management solution for the control of appliances deployed on an end-customer's network as a virtual or a physical appliance; and Virtual System Upgrades, which are available as extensions to the virtual system capacity that ships with physical appliances.

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Analyst Recommendations for Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW)

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