Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Las Vegas Sands (NYSE:LVS) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report published on Wednesday morning, Zacks.com reports. Zacks Investment Research currently has $70.00 target price on the casino operator’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Las Vegas Sands have outperformed the industry so far this year. Increased revenues at casino, rooms and mall drove the company’s top line in first-quarter 2019. It generated solid revenues from Macao operations as well. In the next couple of years, the company is likely to spend $2 billion in Macao. To strengthen the resort portfolio, Las Vegas Sands is focusing on expanding the Four Seasons Tower Suites Macao, St. Regis Tower Suites Macao and the Londoner Macao. Planned investment in new capital projects in Macao and higher revenues from The Parisian Macao are also likely to drive growth. Las Vegas Sands’ consistent focus on a convention-based Integrated Resort business model is an added positive. Nevertheless, high debt and competition are worrisome. Estimates for the current year have witnessed upward revisions in the past 30 days.”

Other analysts have also issued reports about the company. Stifel Nicolaus lifted their price target on Las Vegas Sands from $72.00 to $80.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, April 18th. Deutsche Bank lifted their price target on Las Vegas Sands to $60.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, January 24th. HSBC lowered Las Vegas Sands from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 17th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Jefferies Financial Group lifted their price target on Las Vegas Sands from $57.00 to $69.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Monday, April 8th. Finally, Telsey Advisory Group reissued a market perform rating and set a $64.00 price target (up from $58.00) on shares of Las Vegas Sands in a research note on Thursday, April 18th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Las Vegas Sands presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $68.60.

Shares of LVS stock traded up $0.82 during mid-day trading on Wednesday, reaching $63.77. 42,855 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 3,667,649. Las Vegas Sands has a 1-year low of $47.39 and a 1-year high of $81.45. The firm has a market capitalization of $49.02 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.16 and a beta of 1.43. The company has a current ratio of 1.73, a quick ratio of 1.72 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.85.

Las Vegas Sands (NYSE:LVS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 17th. The casino operator reported $0.91 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.85 by $0.06. Las Vegas Sands had a return on equity of 34.52% and a net margin of 11.15%. The firm had revenue of $3.65 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.48 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $1.04 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.9% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Las Vegas Sands will post 3.35 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 27th. Investors of record on Wednesday, June 19th will be paid a $0.77 dividend. This represents a $3.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.83%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, June 18th. Las Vegas Sands’s dividend payout ratio is currently 92.77%.

Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Cornerstone Advisors Inc. increased its holdings in Las Vegas Sands by 99.6% in the fourth quarter. Cornerstone Advisors Inc. now owns 487 shares of the casino operator’s stock worth $25,000 after purchasing an additional 243 shares in the last quarter. First Interstate Bank increased its holdings in Las Vegas Sands by 70.8% in the first quarter. First Interstate Bank now owns 410 shares of the casino operator’s stock worth $25,000 after purchasing an additional 170 shares in the last quarter. Bartlett & Co. LLC bought a new stake in Las Vegas Sands in the fourth quarter worth approximately $26,000. Private Capital Group LLC increased its holdings in Las Vegas Sands by 55.7% in the first quarter. Private Capital Group LLC now owns 467 shares of the casino operator’s stock worth $28,000 after purchasing an additional 167 shares in the last quarter. Finally, FTB Advisors Inc. increased its holdings in Las Vegas Sands by 73.4% in the fourth quarter. FTB Advisors Inc. now owns 607 shares of the casino operator’s stock worth $31,000 after purchasing an additional 257 shares in the last quarter. 36.76% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Las Vegas Sands Company Profile

Las Vegas Sands Corp., together with its subsidiaries, develops, owns, and operates integrated resorts in Asia and the United States. It owns and operates The Venetian Macao Resort Hotel, the Sands Cotai Central, The Parisian Macao, The Plaza Macao and Four Seasons Hotel Macao, Cotai Strip, and the Sands Macao in Macao, the People's Republic of China; and iconic Marina Bay Sands in Singapore.

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