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Grand Canyon (LOPE) Hits New 52-Week High on Solid Results

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Shares of Grand Canyon Education, Inc. LOPE scaled a new 52-week high of $67.85 on Mar 13. In fact, this for-profit school stock rose 63.1% in the last one year and has returned 15.8% year to date, outperforming the Zacks categorized School industry.

This postsecondary education provider, with a market cap of $3.17 billion, has strengths in several key areas. Thus, adding the stock to your portfolio should be prudent.


What’s Driving It?

Grand Canyon is a provider of online postsecondary education services and also offers programs at its traditional campus in Phoenix, Arizona and onsite at the facilities of employers.

Last month, Grand Canyon reported impressive fourth-quarter 2016 results wherein its top and bottom line beat analysts’ expectations by 1% and 3.1%, respectively. The reported earnings also grew 24.7% year over year on 13.3% higher revenues and 9.9% enrollment growth. New enrollments also grew in the low double-digits year over year. Additionally, operating margin saw a solid 210-basis point growth.

Investors should note that the U.S. presidential election had a positive impact on the school industry as shares of for-profit education companies like DeVry Education Group Inc. DV, Universal Technical Institute, Inc. UTI and Strayer Education, Inc. (STRA - Free Report) rallied post Donald Trump’s victory.

Trump has assured support to schools, confirming federal funding for online companies. He may even ease regulations imposed on the industry by the Obama administration.

Grand Canyon has an expected EPS growth rate of 10.4% for 3–5 years. The stock carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Our VGM Score identifies stocks that have the most attractive value, growth, and momentum characteristics. In fact, our research shows that stocks with VGM Scores of ‘A’ or ‘B’ when combined with a Zacks Rank #1 or 2 make solid investment choices.

Also, Grand Canyon beat earnings estimates in all of the past four quarters, the average being 7.61%.

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