First Trust Advisors LP Increases Position in Vera Bradley, Inc. (VRA)

First Trust Advisors LP boosted its stake in Vera Bradley, Inc. (NASDAQ:VRA) by 17.7% in the 4th quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 38,877 shares of the textile maker’s stock after buying an additional 5,859 shares during the period. First Trust Advisors LP owned 0.11% of Vera Bradley worth $333,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Meeder Asset Management Inc. grew its position in shares of Vera Bradley by 1,430.1% during the 4th quarter. Meeder Asset Management Inc. now owns 6,962 shares of the textile maker’s stock valued at $60,000 after acquiring an additional 6,507 shares during the period. Pacer Advisors Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Vera Bradley by 294.9% during the 3rd quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 7,172 shares of the textile maker’s stock valued at $109,000 after buying an additional 5,356 shares in the last quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund purchased a new position in shares of Vera Bradley during the 4th quarter valued at $70,000. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Vera Bradley during the 4th quarter valued at $83,000. Finally, Laurion Capital Management LP purchased a new position in shares of Vera Bradley during the 3rd quarter valued at $160,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 71.21% of the company’s stock.

In other news, insider Michael C. Ray sold 33,236 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $9.22, for a total value of $306,435.92. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 31,589 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $291,250.58. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, major shareholder Anne Marie Ray sold 14,189 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $9.36, for a total transaction of $132,809.04. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 395,301 shares of company stock worth $4,423,009 over the last quarter. 30.10% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

VRA has been the topic of a number of analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Vera Bradley from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $16.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Saturday, March 16th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Vera Bradley from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 7th. Telsey Advisory Group restated a “market perform” rating and issued a $11.00 target price on shares of Vera Bradley in a report on Thursday, March 14th. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of Vera Bradley from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, April 11th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $13.50.

Shares of NASDAQ:VRA opened at $12.08 on Friday. The stock has a market cap of $412.71 million, a P/E ratio of 20.47 and a beta of 0.76. Vera Bradley, Inc. has a 12 month low of $7.94 and a 12 month high of $17.38.

Vera Bradley (NASDAQ:VRA) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, March 13th. The textile maker reported $0.25 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.24 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $118.20 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $116.34 million. Vera Bradley had a net margin of 4.99% and a return on equity of 7.15%. The firm’s revenue was down 10.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.33 EPS. On average, equities analysts predict that Vera Bradley, Inc. will post 0.69 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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About Vera Bradley

Vera Bradley, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, and sells women's handbags, luggage and travel items, fashion and home accessories, and gifts. It operates through two segments, Direct and Indirect. The company offers totes, crossbodies, satchels, clutches, backpacks, baby bags, and lunch bags; accessories, including wallets, wristlets, eyeglass cases, scarves, and various technology accessories; and travel products, such as rolling luggage, cosmetics, and travel and packing accessories, as well as travel bags comprising duffel and weekend bags.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Vera Bradley (NASDAQ:VRA)

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