Grand Canyon Education (NASDAQ:LOPE) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Grand Canyon Education, Inc. is a regionally accredited provider of online postsecondary education services focused on offering graduate and undergraduate degree programs in its core disciplines of education, business, and healthcare. In addition to its online programs, it offers programs at its traditional campus in Phoenix, Arizona and onsite at the facilities of employers. “

Several other brokerages also recently issued reports on LOPE. BidaskClub downgraded Grand Canyon Education from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, December 13th. Barrington Research reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $150.00 price objective on shares of Grand Canyon Education in a research note on Tuesday, December 18th. Finally, Robert W. Baird reduced their price objective on Grand Canyon Education from $141.00 to $130.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, December 19th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Grand Canyon Education has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $131.40.

Shares of NASDAQ LOPE traded down $1.25 during trading on Thursday, hitting $93.66. The company had a trading volume of 343,716 shares, compared to its average volume of 457,063. The company has a quick ratio of 4.65, a current ratio of 4.65 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.05. Grand Canyon Education has a 12 month low of $85.14 and a 12 month high of $130.10. The company has a market capitalization of $4.52 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.65, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.14 and a beta of 1.09.

Grand Canyon Education (NASDAQ:LOPE) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 8th. The company reported $1.06 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.99 by $0.07. The firm had revenue of $155.45 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $153.31 million. Grand Canyon Education had a return on equity of 21.66% and a net margin of 23.60%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 34.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.81 earnings per share. Research analysts anticipate that Grand Canyon Education will post 4.88 EPS for the current year.

In other news, insider Joseph N. Mildenhall sold 2,000 shares of Grand Canyon Education stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, December 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $110.71, for a total value of $221,420.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 77,402 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,569,175.42. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Brian E. Mueller sold 30,000 shares of Grand Canyon Education stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $127.00, for a total value of $3,810,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 308,739 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $39,209,853. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 96,000 shares of company stock worth $11,452,970. Corporate insiders own 2.40% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. FIL Ltd boosted its holdings in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 2.0% in the 3rd quarter. FIL Ltd now owns 1,929,082 shares of the company’s stock worth $217,600,000 after purchasing an additional 38,139 shares during the period. William Blair Investment Management LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 6.2% in the 3rd quarter. William Blair Investment Management LLC now owns 1,708,980 shares of the company’s stock worth $192,773,000 after purchasing an additional 99,526 shares during the period. Handelsbanken Fonder AB boosted its holdings in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 2.2% in the 3rd quarter. Handelsbanken Fonder AB now owns 1,215,290 shares of the company’s stock worth $137,085,000 after purchasing an additional 26,000 shares during the period. Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 24.7% in the 3rd quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 1,050,700 shares of the company’s stock worth $118,519,000 after purchasing an additional 208,400 shares during the period. Finally, Victory Capital Management Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Grand Canyon Education by 70.6% in the 3rd quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 836,261 shares of the company’s stock worth $94,330,000 after purchasing an additional 346,017 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 94.90% of the company’s stock.

Grand Canyon Education Company Profile

Grand Canyon Education, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides education services in the United States and Canada. The company operates Grand Canyon University that offers approximately 225 graduate and undergraduate degree programs and certificates across 9 colleges online and on ground through campus in Phoenix, Arizona; leased facilities; and facilities owned by third party employers.

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