NetApp Inc. (NTAP) Shares Gap Up After Dividend Announcement
NetApp Inc. (NASDAQ:NTAP) gapped up before the market opened on Friday after the company announced a dividend. The stock had previously closed at $35.35, but opened at $36.90. NetApp shares last traded at $36.93, with a volume of 2,824,548 shares traded.
The newly announced dividend which will be paid on Wednesday, January 25th. Stockholders of record on Friday, January 6th will be given a dividend of $0.19 per share. This represents a $0.76 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.05%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, January 4th. NetApp’s payout ratio is 69.09%.
A number of brokerages have recently weighed in on NTAP. TheStreet raised NetApp from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday. Pacific Crest reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of NetApp in a report on Thursday. Credit Suisse Group AG reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $30.00 price target on shares of NetApp in a report on Thursday. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $38.00 price target on shares of NetApp in a report on Thursday. Finally, Maxim Group downgraded NetApp from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $40.00 to $43.00 in a report on Thursday. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Eleven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-five have assigned a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $32.54.
The firm has a 50-day moving average of $33.93 and a 200-day moving average of $29.46. The firm has a market capitalization of $10.31 billion, a PE ratio of 33.30 and a beta of 1.49.
NetApp (NASDAQ:NTAP) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, November 16th. The data storage provider reported $0.60 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.54 by $0.06. The firm had revenue of $1.34 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.36 billion. NetApp had a return on equity of 15.66% and a net margin of 5.89%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 7.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.61 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts expect that NetApp Inc. will post $2.37 EPS for the current fiscal year.
In related news, CEO George Kurian sold 48,176 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.87, for a total value of $1,679,897.12. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 92,746 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,234,053.02. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Jeffry R. Allen sold 15,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.82, for a total value of $522,300.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 15,000 shares in the company, valued at approximately $522,300. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.49% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Legal & General Group Plc boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 0.6% in the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 1,320,761 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $36,042,000 after buying an additional 8,301 shares during the period. Fort Pitt Capital Group LLC boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 525.0% in the second quarter. Fort Pitt Capital Group LLC now owns 472,421 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $11,617,000 after buying an additional 396,837 shares during the period. Creative Planning boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 248.6% in the second quarter. Creative Planning now owns 10,495 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $258,000 after buying an additional 7,484 shares during the period. National Pension Service boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 4.4% in the first quarter. National Pension Service now owns 225,705 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $6,159,000 after buying an additional 9,591 shares during the period. Finally, DNB Asset Management AS boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 4.1% in the second quarter. DNB Asset Management AS now owns 17,797 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $438,000 after buying an additional 700 shares during the period. 89.59% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
NetApp, Inc (NetApp) provides software, systems and services to manage and store customer data. The Company enables enterprises, service providers, governmental organizations, and partners to envision, deploy and evolve their information technology (IT) environments. The Company offers a portfolio of products and services that satisfy a range of customer workloads across different data types and deployment models.
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