Nielsen N.V. (NYSE:NLSN) gapped down before the market opened on Friday following a dissappointing earnings announcement. The stock had previously closed at $31.08, but opened at $33.90. Nielsen shares last traded at $34.12, with a volume of 3644758 shares traded.

The business services provider reported $0.71 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.75 by ($0.04). Nielsen had a return on equity of 16.85% and a net margin of 6.53%. The company had revenue of $1.76 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.76 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $0.44 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 6.3% compared to the same quarter last year.

A number of equities analysts recently issued reports on NLSN shares. Robert W. Baird raised Nielsen from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday, January 8th. BidaskClub lowered Nielsen from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 1st. Morgan Stanley lowered their price target on Nielsen from $49.00 to $47.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, November 10th. Goldman Sachs Group started coverage on Nielsen in a report on Wednesday, November 8th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $40.00 price target on the stock. Finally, Cantor Fitzgerald reissued a “hold” rating and set a $45.00 price target on shares of Nielsen in a report on Monday, October 23rd. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $42.71.

In related news, Director Luca Guerrino De purchased 1,369 shares of Nielsen stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 13th. The stock was bought at an average cost of $36.54 per share, for a total transaction of $50,023.26. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, SVP Jeffrey Charlton sold 3,080 shares of Nielsen stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.01, for a total transaction of $110,910.80. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 10,100 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $363,701. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.67% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC lifted its position in shares of Nielsen by 72.9% during the 4th quarter. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC now owns 10,221,478 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $372,062,000 after acquiring an additional 4,310,880 shares during the period. Vontobel Asset Management Inc. lifted its position in shares of Nielsen by 51.2% during the 4th quarter. Vontobel Asset Management Inc. now owns 6,898,520 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $257,335,000 after acquiring an additional 2,334,866 shares during the period. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its position in shares of Nielsen by 0.3% during the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 6,505,579 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $269,656,000 after acquiring an additional 18,276 shares during the period. Parnassus Investments CA lifted its position in shares of Nielsen by 107.5% during the 4th quarter. Parnassus Investments CA now owns 5,187,500 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $188,825,000 after acquiring an additional 2,687,500 shares during the period. Finally, Boston Partners lifted its position in shares of Nielsen by 3.6% during the 3rd quarter. Boston Partners now owns 4,062,685 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $168,398,000 after acquiring an additional 141,937 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 96.27% of the company’s stock.

The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.88, a quick ratio of 1.41 and a current ratio of 1.41. The stock has a market capitalization of $12,090.24, a PE ratio of 27.85, a PEG ratio of 1.73 and a beta of 0.91.

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About Nielsen

Nielsen N.V. (Nielsen), formerly Nielsen Holdings N.V., is an information and measurement company. The Company is engaged in providing clients with an understanding of consumers and consumer behavior. The Company delivers media and marketing information, and analytics on a global and local basis. Nielsen operates through two business segments: Buy and Watch.

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