Avon Products (AVP) Downgraded to Strong Sell at Zacks Investment Research

Avon Products (NYSE:AVP) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Avon underperformed the industry in the past month. Though the company delivered better-than-expected earnings in fourth quarter 2017, it lagged earnings estimates in the preceding five quarters. Moreover, sales reverted to negative surprise trend after a beat in the last quarter owing to declines in both Active and Ending Representatives across most segments. Going forward, management expects sales to remain under pressure due to a tough macro and competitive backdrop, mainly in its largest markets. However, the company remains encouraged by the smooth progress on Transformation Plan, which delivered above its cost-saving plan for 2017. The company realized cost savings of more than $250 million in 2017, beating the targeted $230 million. Further, the company expects execution of significant operational improvements in 2018, despite continued competitive pressures.”

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Other research analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. ValuEngine raised shares of Avon Products from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, March 1st. Deutsche Bank increased their price target on shares of Avon Products from $2.00 to $3.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, February 16th. Royal Bank of Canada reaffirmed a “sector perform” rating and issued a $2.00 price target on shares of Avon Products in a report on Friday, February 16th. Jefferies Group set a $2.00 price target on shares of Avon Products and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, February 15th. Finally, Bank of America downgraded shares of Avon Products from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and lowered their price target for the company from $3.00 to $2.50 in a report on Thursday, January 4th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Avon Products presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $2.47.

Shares of NYSE:AVP traded up $0.06 during trading on Tuesday, reaching $2.83. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 4,412,836 shares, compared to its average volume of 4,521,816. The company has a current ratio of 1.43, a quick ratio of 1.05 and a debt-to-equity ratio of -2.62. Avon Products has a 12 month low of $1.85 and a 12 month high of $4.89. The company has a market cap of $1,219.84, a price-to-earnings ratio of 47.17, a PEG ratio of 1.22 and a beta of 1.42.

Avon Products (NYSE:AVP) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 15th. The company reported $0.12 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.07 by $0.05. Avon Products had a net margin of 0.38% and a negative return on equity of 6.19%. The firm had revenue of $1.57 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.60 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.01 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up .1% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts forecast that Avon Products will post 0.18 EPS for the current year.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in AVP. Investec Asset Management LTD lifted its stake in Avon Products by 54.4% in the fourth quarter. Investec Asset Management LTD now owns 12,369,917 shares of the company’s stock worth $26,595,000 after purchasing an additional 4,359,067 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC lifted its stake in Avon Products by 47.6% in the fourth quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 11,914,500 shares of the company’s stock worth $25,616,000 after purchasing an additional 3,842,800 shares during the last quarter. Gotham Asset Management LLC lifted its stake in Avon Products by 171.2% in the fourth quarter. Gotham Asset Management LLC now owns 1,942,182 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,176,000 after purchasing an additional 1,225,998 shares during the last quarter. Commerzbank Aktiengesellschaft FI lifted its stake in Avon Products by 45.6% in the fourth quarter. Commerzbank Aktiengesellschaft FI now owns 3,512,139 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,551,000 after purchasing an additional 1,099,460 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Shah Capital Management lifted its stake in Avon Products by 15.1% in the fourth quarter. Shah Capital Management now owns 8,014,702 shares of the company’s stock worth $17,231,000 after purchasing an additional 1,052,412 shares during the last quarter. 83.61% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Avon Products

Avon Products, Inc manufactures and markets beauty and related products in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, south Latin America, north Latin America, and the Asia Pacific. The company offers beauty products, including skincare, fragrance, and color cosmetics; and fashion and home products, such as fashion jewelry, watches, apparel, footwear, accessories, gift and decorative products, housewares, entertainment and leisure products, children's products, and nutritional products.

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