Lamar Advertising Sees Unusually High Options Volume (LAMR)

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Lamar Advertising Co (NASDAQ:LAMR) was the target of unusually large options trading activity on Wednesday. Investors purchased 1,052 call options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 1,266% compared to the typical daily volume of 77 call options.

Several brokerages have recently issued reports on LAMR. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Lamar Advertising from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Monday, April 1st. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Lamar Advertising from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 9th. MKM Partners raised their price objective on shares of Lamar Advertising to $81.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, February 21st. Finally, Imperial Capital restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $88.00 price objective (down previously from $94.00) on shares of Lamar Advertising in a research note on Wednesday, January 23rd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating, two have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $78.50.

LAMR opened at $80.35 on Thursday. Lamar Advertising has a fifty-two week low of $61.84 and a fifty-two week high of $81.90. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.37, a quick ratio of 0.80 and a current ratio of 0.80. The firm has a market cap of $8.07 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.61 and a beta of 1.00.

Lamar Advertising (NASDAQ:LAMR) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 20th. The real estate investment trust reported $0.96 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.34 by ($0.38). Lamar Advertising had a return on equity of 28.12% and a net margin of 18.76%. The business had revenue of $427.90 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $426.29 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.88 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 7.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Lamar Advertising will post 5.59 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 29th. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 15th were paid a dividend of $0.96 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, March 14th. This represents a $3.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.78%. This is an increase from Lamar Advertising’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.92. Lamar Advertising’s payout ratio is currently 69.82%.

In other news, CEO Sean E. Reilly sold 50,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.64, for a total value of $3,932,000.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CFO Keith A. Istre sold 22,263 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, February 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $76.84, for a total transaction of $1,710,688.92. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 135,185 shares in the company, valued at approximately $10,387,615.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 179,869 shares of company stock worth $14,202,746. 15.64% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of LAMR. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund boosted its stake in Lamar Advertising by 6,818.0% during the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 2,297,606 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $33,000 after buying an additional 2,264,394 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc boosted its stake in Lamar Advertising by 7.5% during the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 12,404,517 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $965,072,000 after buying an additional 867,169 shares in the last quarter. Norges Bank acquired a new stake in Lamar Advertising during the fourth quarter worth $45,636,000. Rothschild & Co. Asset Management US Inc. acquired a new stake in Lamar Advertising during the fourth quarter worth $20,855,000. Finally, Millennium Management LLC boosted its stake in Lamar Advertising by 183.4% during the fourth quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 364,903 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $25,244,000 after buying an additional 236,151 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 82.27% of the company’s stock.

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About Lamar Advertising

Founded in 1902, Lamar Advertising (Nasdaq: LAMR) is one of the largest outdoor advertising companies in North America, with approximately 360,000 displays across the United States and Canada. Lamar offers advertisers a variety of billboard, interstate logo, transit and airport advertising formats, helping both local businesses and national brands reach broad audiences every day.

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