Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance (NYSE:ARI) was upgraded by equities researchers at Wells Fargo & Co. from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a note issued to investors on Thursday.

Other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods raised their price target on Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance from $16.00 to $16.50 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a report on Thursday, July 28th. Barclays PLC restated an “equal weight” rating and issued a $17.00 price target on shares of Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance in a research report on Thursday, September 8th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $19.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Friday, September 9th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the stock. Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $17.50.

Shares of Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance (NYSE:ARI) opened at 16.01 on Thursday. Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance has a one year low of $13.80 and a one year high of $18.25. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $16.48 and a 200 day moving average price of $16.22. The firm has a market cap of $1.08 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.31 and a beta of 0.70.

Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance (NYSE:ARI) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The real estate investment trust reported $0.51 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.48 by $0.03. Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance had a return on equity of 10.36% and a net margin of 46.71%. The business earned $46.90 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $7.60 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.45 EPS. Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance’s quarterly revenue was up 43.0% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance will post $2.32 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 17th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 30th will be given a dividend of $0.46 per share. This represents a $1.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 11.49%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 28th. Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 193.69%.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in ARI. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance by 175.5% in the second quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 6,494 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $105,000 after buying an additional 4,137 shares during the period. IFP Advisors Inc boosted its stake in shares of Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance by 1,282.6% in the first quarter. IFP Advisors Inc now owns 6,982 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $114,000 after buying an additional 6,477 shares during the period. Creative Planning boosted its stake in shares of Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance by 46.7% in the third quarter. Creative Planning now owns 13,296 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $218,000 after buying an additional 4,232 shares during the period. Invictus RG bought a new stake in shares of Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance during the first quarter valued at about $220,000. Finally, KCG Holdings Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance during the second quarter valued at about $270,000. 51.81% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance

Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance, Inc (ARI) is a real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company primarily originates, acquires, invests in and manages performing commercial first mortgage loans, subordinate financings, commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) and other commercial real estate-related debt investments.

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