Ventas Inc. (NYSE:VTR) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Ventas announced that it has been engaged in discussions with Kindred Healthcare over the terms on which it will approve the sale of 36 skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) which it owns, but are operated by Kindred. This disclosure from the healthcare REIT comes after Kindred recently declared its intention to exit the SNF business. This move will be in sync with Ventas’ strategy of “de-emphasis” of this particular healthcare real estate category. The company had already made a successful spin off of majority of its SNF business in 2015. Going forward, the company’s large and diversified healthcare portfolio is expected to help it benefit from an increasing healthcare spending, aging population and a rise in insured individuals. However, earnings dilutive impact from sale of assets, stiff competition and any rise in interest rate are concerns before the company.”

Other analysts also recently issued reports about the stock. Mizuho reissued a “buy” rating and set a $84.00 price target (up from $82.00) on shares of Ventas in a report on Monday, August 1st. Jefferies Group raised shares of Ventas from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price target for the stock from $65.00 to $75.00 in a report on Thursday, October 20th. Argus reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Ventas in a report on Monday, August 29th. Raymond James Financial Inc. began coverage on shares of Ventas in a report on Tuesday, July 26th. They set a “market perform” rating on the stock. Finally, BTIG Research began coverage on shares of Ventas in a research report on Thursday, August 25th. They set a “neutral” rating for the company. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $66.60.

Analyst Recommendations for Ventas (NYSE:VTR)

Ventas (NYSE:VTR) opened at 57.86 on Wednesday. Ventas has a 52 week low of $46.87 and a 52 week high of $76.80. The stock has a market capitalization of $20.49 billion, a PE ratio of 35.05 and a beta of 0.18. The firm has a 50 day moving average of $67.26 and a 200-day moving average of $69.33.

Ventas (NYSE:VTR) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, October 28th. The real estate investment trust reported $1.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.01 by $0.02. Ventas had a net margin of 16.61% and a return on equity of 5.76%. The firm had revenue of $867.12 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $842.66 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.09 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 4.8% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts predict that Ventas will post $4.12 EPS for the current year.

In other Ventas news, EVP T Richard Riney sold 169,450 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $72.98, for a total transaction of $12,366,461.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 176,170 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $12,856,886.60. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, SVP Gregory R. Liebbe sold 6,943 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $73.20, for a total transaction of $508,227.60. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 7,585 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $555,222. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 1.10% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Capital Advisors Ltd. LLC raised its position in shares of Ventas by 48.0% in the second quarter. Capital Advisors Ltd. LLC now owns 1,542 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $112,000 after buying an additional 500 shares during the period. Acadian Asset Management LLC raised its position in shares of Ventas by 33.6% in the second quarter. Acadian Asset Management LLC now owns 1,884 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $137,000 after buying an additional 474 shares during the period. Synovus Financial Corp raised its position in shares of Ventas by 7.8% in the third quarter. Synovus Financial Corp now owns 2,083 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $147,000 after buying an additional 150 shares during the period. Washington Trust Bank raised its position in shares of Ventas by 12.7% in the second quarter. Washington Trust Bank now owns 2,048 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $149,000 after buying an additional 230 shares during the period. Finally, Point72 Asia Hong Kong Ltd bought a new position in shares of Ventas during the second quarter valued at $160,000. 89.97% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Ventas

Ventas, Inc is a healthcare real estate investment trust (REIT) with its properties located throughout the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. The Company operates through three segments: triple-net leased properties, senior living operations and MOB operations. In its triple-net leased properties segment, the Company acquires and owns seniors housing and healthcare properties throughout the United States and the United Kingdom.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:VTR

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