Lionsgate stock up on upgrades, ‘Hunger’

Shares soar to highest price since 2008

Shares of Lionsgate soared 11% Wednesday in the wake of a bullish outlook for its “Hunger Games” franchise plus several analyst upgrades.

The stock gained $1.08 on the New York Stock Exchange to close at $10.83 — its highest price since 2008 — and then gained another 18¢ in after-hours trading.

Lionsgate’s stock price is now 25% higher than it was following the mini-major’s Jan. 13 announcement of its $412.5 million leveraged buyout of Summit Entertainment, bringing the “Hunger Games” and “Twilight” franchises together under the combined company.

Wednesday’s run-up came following a CNBC interview with Lionsgate vice chairman Michael Burns, who asserted that the popularity of Suzanne Collins’ “The Hunger Games” trilogy portends a potentially strong reception when the first film opens March 23.

Burns said in the interview, broadcast after the market closed Tuesday, “I don’t want to hype any particular franchise, but the movie’s terrific.”

Recent analyst upgrades include Stifel Nicolaus from a “hold” to a “buy”; Evercore Partners upgraded from an “equal weight” to an “overweight”; and Miller Tabak from a “neutral” to a “buy.” Piper Jaffray reiterated an “overweight” rating and issued a $12 price target, and Hudson Square bumped its price target to $14 from $9.

In addition, Moody’s Investors Service and Standard & Poors both disclosed last week that they were reviewing credit rating on Lionsgate for possible upgrades.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety

Loading