Children’s Place (NASDAQ:PLCE) Shares 7.3% Drop on Disappointing Earnings

Shares of The Children’s Place, Inc. (NASDAQ: PLCE – Get a rating) fell 7.3% by midday on Friday after the company reported weaker-than-expected quarterly results. The company traded as low as $44.09 and last traded at $44.27. Around 5,860 shares were traded at midday, down 99% from the average daily volume of 588,048 shares. The stock previously closed at $47.74. The company reported earnings per share (EPS) of $1.05 for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.46 per ($0.41). Children’s Place had a return on equity of 104.74% and a net margin of 9.77%. The company posted revenue of $362.40 million for the quarter, versus a consensus estimate of $401.59 million. During the same period last year, the company achieved EPS of $3.25. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 16.8% year over year.

The PLCE has been the subject of several reports by research analysts. StockNews.com downgraded Children’s Place from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday. B. Riley lowered his target price on Children’s Place from $105.00 to $84.00 and set an “na” rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday. UBS Group lowered its target price on Children’s Place from $85.00 to $60.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a Wednesday, March 23 research note. Telsey Advisory Group lowered its target price on Children’s Place from $80.00 to $70.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a research note on Friday. Finally, Citigroup lowered its target price on Children’s Place from $60.00 to $48.00 in a research note on Friday. Four analysts gave the stock a hold rating and three gave the stock a buy rating. According to data from MarketBeat, the stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $91.29.

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In addition, director John E. Bachman purchased 2,500 shares in a trade dated Wednesday, March 23. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $48.83 per share, with a total value of $122,075.00. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available via the SEC website. Company insiders hold 5.01% of the company’s shares.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently changed their positions in the company. First Trust Advisors LP increased its stake in shares of Children’s Place to 98.8% in the first quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 10,020 shares of the company valued at $975,000 after acquiring 4,979 additional shares in the last quarter. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in Children’s Place by 12.1% during the first quarter. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. now owns 13,865 shares of the company valued at $1,349,000 after purchasing an additional 1,502 shares during the period. Morgan Stanley increased its stake in Children’s Place by 21.7% during the second quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 216,030 shares of the company valued at $20,103,000 after purchasing an additional 38,552 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. bought a new position in Children’s Place during the third quarter worth approximately $231,000. Finally, the Swiss National Bank increased its holdings in Children’s Place by 0.7% in the third quarter. The Swiss National Bank now owns 30,700 shares of the company worth $2,310,000 after buying 200 more shares in the last quarter. 99.58% of the shares are held by institutional investors and hedge funds.

The company has a market capitalization of $603.80 million, a PE ratio of 3.55 and a beta of 2.00. The company has a debt ratio of 0.22, a current ratio of 0.98 and a quick ratio of 0.26. The company’s fifty-day simple moving average is $50.07 and its 200-day simple moving average is $68.27.

About Children’s Square (NASDAQ: PLCE)

The Children’s Place, Inc. operates as a specialty clothing retailer for children. The Company operates in two segments, The Children’s Place US and The Children’s Place International. She sells children’s clothing, shoes, accessories and other items; and designs, manufactures and sells merchandise under the exclusive brands The Children’s Place, Place, Baby Place, Gymboree and Sugar & Jade.

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