Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Fortinet, Inc. (NASDAQ:FTNT) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Tuesday morning. Zacks Investment Research currently has $44.00 target price on the software maker’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Fortinet reported better-than-expected third-quarter 2017 results. The year over year comparisons were also favorable on both the counts. Notably, Fortinet has outperformed the industry on YTD basis. Going ahead, we believe that the company’s strategy of focusing on selling subscription-based services will enable it to generate more stable revenues and help in expanding margins. Furthermore, acquisitions are a major positive for Fortinet as these help it to strengthen its product portfolio and capabilities, thereby boosting its top-line performance. Nonetheless, we are slightly concerned over the company’s declining revenue growth rate. Notably, over the last five quarters, the company’s revenue growth rates have been around 20%, which are significantly lower than its previous rates of over 30%. Also, a tepid Q4 guidance and downbeat revenue outlook for full year makes us slightly cautious about its near-term performance.”

FTNT has been the subject of a number of other reports. Piper Jaffray Companies restated a buy rating and issued a $46.00 price objective on shares of Fortinet in a report on Friday, October 27th. BidaskClub upgraded Fortinet from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Thursday, July 13th. Credit Suisse Group started coverage on Fortinet in a report on Tuesday, September 5th. They issued an underperform rating and a $33.00 price objective for the company. BMO Capital Markets restated a buy rating and issued a $46.00 price objective on shares of Fortinet in a report on Thursday, October 5th. Finally, Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. restated a buy rating and issued a $45.00 price objective on shares of Fortinet in a report on Thursday, October 5th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating, sixteen have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. Fortinet has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $44.00.

Shares of Fortinet (NASDAQ FTNT) traded down 2.51% on Tuesday, reaching $38.42. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 966,385 shares. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $38.53 and a 200 day moving average of $38.51. Fortinet has a 52-week low of $28.50 and a 52-week high of $41.56. The company has a market cap of $6.76 billion, a PE ratio of 105.26 and a beta of 1.01.

Fortinet (NASDAQ:FTNT) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The software maker reported $0.28 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.23 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $374.20 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $370.67 million. Fortinet had a return on equity of 10.92% and a net margin of 5.93%. Fortinet’s quarterly revenue was up 18.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.18 earnings per share. Analysts predict that Fortinet will post $1.02 earnings per share for the current year.

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Fortinet declared that its board has initiated a share buyback program on Wednesday, July 26th that authorizes the company to buyback $300.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the software maker to reacquire up to 4.2% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

In other news, insider Keith Jensen sold 1,850 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.47, for a total transaction of $67,469.50. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 1,315 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $47,958.05. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Insiders have sold a total of 3,467 shares of company stock worth $127,005 in the last three months. Insiders own 17.00% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. D.A. Davidson & CO. lifted its position in Fortinet by 1.1% in the 2nd quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. now owns 10,364 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $388,000 after acquiring an additional 114 shares in the last quarter. Capstone Asset Management Co. lifted its position in Fortinet by 1.4% in the 2nd quarter. Capstone Asset Management Co. now owns 13,582 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $509,000 after acquiring an additional 190 shares in the last quarter. Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC lifted its position in Fortinet by 2.7% in the 2nd quarter. Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC now owns 7,492 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $288,000 after acquiring an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. TRUE Private Wealth Advisors lifted its position in Fortinet by 3.4% in the 2nd quarter. TRUE Private Wealth Advisors now owns 6,457 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $241,000 after acquiring an additional 211 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Fisher Asset Management LLC lifted its position in Fortinet by 0.8% in the 2nd quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 31,427 shares of the software maker’s stock valued at $1,177,000 after acquiring an additional 252 shares in the last quarter. 69.19% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Fortinet Company Profile

Fortinet, Inc is a network security company. The Company provides cyber security solutions to a range of enterprises, service providers and government organizations across the world. Its network security solution consists of FortiGate physical, virtual machine and cloud platforms, which provide integrated security and networking functions to protect data, applications and users from network-and content-level security threats.

Analyst Recommendations for Fortinet (NASDAQ:FTNT)

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