Investors Buy Shares of The Priceline Group Inc. (NASDAQ:PCLN) on Weakness

Investors bought shares of The Priceline Group Inc. (NASDAQ:PCLN) on weakness during trading hours on Tuesday. $177.84 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $159.11 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $18.73 million into the stock. Of all companies tracked, The Priceline Group had the 30th highest net in-flow for the day. The Priceline Group traded down ($3.91) for the day and closed at $2,024.59

PCLN has been the topic of several recent research reports. Benchmark Co. reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $2,050.00 target price (up previously from $1,900.00) on shares of The Priceline Group in a research note on Sunday, May 14th. Deutsche Bank AG boosted their price objective on shares of The Priceline Group from $1,725.00 to $2,000.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, May 8th. Raymond James Financial, Inc. reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $2,070.00 price target (up from $1,915.00) on shares of The Priceline Group in a research note on Monday, May 8th. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) boosted their price target on shares of The Priceline Group from $1,750.00 to $1,850.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 10th. Finally, Susquehanna Bancshares Inc reissued a “positive” rating and set a $2,150.00 price objective (up from $1,950.00) on shares of The Priceline Group in a research report on Friday, May 12th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating, twenty-seven have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $1,924.32.

The stock has a market capitalization of $88.80 billion, a P/E ratio of 38.44 and a beta of 1.42. The company has a 50-day moving average of $1,946.27 and a 200 day moving average of $1,818.99.

The Priceline Group (NASDAQ:PCLN) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 8th. The business services provider reported $15.14 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $14.25 by $0.89. The firm had revenue of $3.02 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.99 billion. The Priceline Group had a return on equity of 33.10% and a net margin of 20.51%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 18.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $13.93 EPS. Equities research analysts expect that The Priceline Group Inc. will post $74.77 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, Director Jan L. Docter sold 1,500 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $1,857.67, for a total transaction of $2,786,505.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 346 shares in the company, valued at approximately $642,753.82. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Gillian Tans sold 123 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $1,880.38, for a total value of $231,286.74. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 5,799 shares in the company, valued at $10,904,323.62. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 4,367 shares of company stock valued at $8,166,685. Insiders own 0.42% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Harvest Fund Management Co. Ltd purchased a new position in shares of The Priceline Group during the second quarter worth approximately $101,000. Shine Investment Advisory Services Inc. bought a new position in The Priceline Group during the second quarter worth $105,000. Hartford Financial Management Inc. bought a new position in The Priceline Group during the first quarter worth $106,000. Capital Advisors Ltd. LLC bought a new position in The Priceline Group during the second quarter worth $112,000. Finally, Webster Bank N. A. increased its position in The Priceline Group by 24.0% in the first quarter. Webster Bank N. A. now owns 62 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $110,000 after buying an additional 12 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 95.22% of the company’s stock.

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About The Priceline Group

The Priceline Group Inc is a provider of travel and restaurant online reservation and related services. The Company, through its online travel companies (OTCs), connects consumers wishing to make travel reservations with providers of travel services across the world. It offers consumers an array of accommodation reservations (including hotels, bed and breakfasts, hostels, apartments, vacation rentals and other properties) through its Booking.com, priceline.com and agoda.com brands.

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