Salem Media Group Inc. (NASDAQ: SALM): The Best-Of-Breed For Investing?

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    Renaissance Technologies LLC recently announced the acquisition of new stake in Salem Media Group Inc. (NASDAQ:SALM). The institutional investor has increased its shareholding in the Communication Services company by 9.70% to 0.27 million shares with purchase of 24300.0 shares. This fresh investment now brings its stake to 1.30% valued currently at $0.31 million.

    With over 0.84 million Salem Media Group Inc. (SALM) shares trading Thursday and a closing price of $1.05 on the day, the dollar volume was approximately $0.89 million. The shares have shown a positive weekly performance of 9.38% and its price on 07/16/20 lost nearly -10.26%. Currently, there are 26.68M common shares owned by the public and among those 11.08M shares have been available to trade.

    An analysis of what Wall Street brokers have to say about the expected price targets for this stock gives us this picture: 2 analysts who have offered their price forecasts for SALM have a consensus price objective of $2.03. The analysts have set the share’s price value over the next 12 months at a high of $2.25 and a low of $1.80 should the stock experience a downside. Incidentally, analysts’ outlook for the Salem Media Group Inc. stock is 2.00 for the next 12 months. But an upside of 53.33% will see the stock hit the forecast high price target while mean target price for the stock is $2.03.

    Insiders at the company have transacted a total of 80 times over the past 12 months, according to data filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). 79 of these insider trades were purchases, accounting for 1,020,717 shares. Insider sales of the common stock occurred on 1 occasions, with total insider shares sold totaling 411,600 shares.

    The top 3 mutual fund holders in Salem Media Group Inc. are 1290 VT GAMCO Small Company Value, Gabelli Small Cap Growth Fund (Th, and Vanguard Total Stock Market Index. 1290 VT GAMCO Small Company Value owns 0.43 million shares of the company’s stock, all valued at over $0.49 million. The company sold 60000.0 shares recently to bring their total holdings to about 2.04% of the shares outstanding. Gabelli Small Cap Growth Fund (Th sold 14000.0 shares to see its total holdings shrink to 0.35 million shares valued at over $0.4 million and representing 1.66% of the shares outstanding. Vanguard Total Stock Market Index now owns shares totaling to 1.04% of the shares outstanding.

    Shares of Salem Media Group Inc. (NASDAQ: SALM) opened at $1.04, down -$0.13 from a prior closing price of $1.17. However, the script later closed the day at $1.05, down -10.26%. The company’s stock has a 5-day price change of 9.38% and 9.38% over the past three months. SALM shares are trading -27.08% year to date (YTD), with the 12-month market performance down to -51.83% lower. It has a 12-month low price of $0.65 and touched a high of $2.62 over the same period. Currently, 0.84 million shares have been traded, compared to an average intraday trading volume of 526.17K shares. The stock is trading above its simple moving averages at the SMA20, SMA50, and SMA200, as the current price level is off by -10.19%, 4.29%, and -15.17% respectively.

    Institutional ownership of Salem Media Group Inc. (NASDAQ: SALM) shares accounts for 19.60% of the company’s 26.68M shares outstanding. Mutual fund holders own 42.96%, while other institutional holders and individual stakeholders account for 7.34% and 12.16% respectively.

    It has a market capitalization of $29.77M and a beta (3y monthly) value of 1.57. The earnings-per-share (ttm) stands at -$3.13. Price movements for the stock have been influenced by the stock’s volatility, which stands at 25.08% over the week and 20.44% over the month.

    Analysts forecast that Salem Media Group Inc. (SALM) will achieve an EPS of -$0.18 for the current quarter, -$0.03 for the next quarter and -$0.12 for 2021. The lowest estimate earnings-per-share for the quarter is -$0.32 while analysts give the company a high EPS estimate of -$0.05. Comparatively, EPS for the current quarter was -$0.14 a year ago. Earnings per share for the fiscal year are expected to decrease by -761.50%, and 94.80% over the next financial year. EPS should grow at an annualized rate of 7.00% over the next five years, compared to -47.60% over the past 5-year period.

    If you are looking to buy this stock, then you may note that the average analyst recommendation by 2 brokerage firm advisors rate Salem Media Group Inc. (SALM) as a “Moderate Buy” at a consensus score of 2.00. Specifically, 2 Wall Street analysts polled rate the stock as a buy, while 0 of the 2 advise that investors “hold,” and 0 rated it as a “Sell.”

    Looking at the support for the SALM, a number of firms have released research notes about the stock. Noble Capital Markets stated their Outperform rating for the stock in a research note on January 15, 2019, with the firm’s price target at $3.50. Noble Financial coverage for the Salem Media Group Inc. (SALM) stock in a research note released on October 07, 2014 offered a Buy rating with a price target of $11. Singular Research was of a view on February 24, 2014 that the stock is Buy, while B. Riley & Co. gave the stock Buy rating on April 09, 2013, issuing a price target of $9.50- $11.25. Stanford Research on their part issued Hold rating on July 15, 2008.

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