Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT) was the recipient of unusually large options trading activity on Wednesday. Traders purchased 1,149 put options on the company. This is an increase of 125% compared to the average volume of 510 put options.

A number of research firms have recently commented on AMAT. B. Riley reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $61.00 target price on shares of Applied Materials in a research note on Thursday. Susquehanna Bancshares Inc reiterated a “neutral” rating and set a $42.00 target price on shares of Applied Materials in a research note on Monday, August 21st. Instinet reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $50.00 target price (up from $47.00) on shares of Applied Materials in a research note on Monday, August 21st. Argus lifted their target price on Applied Materials from $44.30 to $52.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, August 21st. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) reiterated a “neutral” rating and set a $49.00 target price on shares of Applied Materials in a research note on Sunday, August 20th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twenty-one have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Applied Materials presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $51.44.

In other Applied Materials news, Director Alexander Karsner sold 22,762 shares of Applied Materials stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $44.03, for a total transaction of $1,002,210.86. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. 0.31% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in AMAT. MCF Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of Applied Materials by 0.3% in the first quarter. MCF Advisors LLC now owns 3,663 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $142,000 after buying an additional 10 shares during the last quarter. Summit Financial Wealth Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of Applied Materials by 0.3% in the second quarter. Summit Financial Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 6,269 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $259,000 after buying an additional 19 shares during the last quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America boosted its position in shares of Applied Materials by 0.7% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 4,170 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $162,000 after buying an additional 29 shares during the last quarter. Adirondack Trust Co. boosted its position in shares of Applied Materials by 1.1% in the second quarter. Adirondack Trust Co. now owns 3,650 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $151,000 after buying an additional 40 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Affinity Wealth Management boosted its position in shares of Applied Materials by 0.8% in the second quarter. Affinity Wealth Management now owns 6,387 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $264,000 after buying an additional 48 shares during the last quarter. 79.33% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of Applied Materials (NASDAQ AMAT) opened at 43.31 on Friday. Applied Materials has a 52 week low of $27.56 and a 52 week high of $47.86. The stock has a market cap of $46.39 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.40 and a beta of 1.82. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $44.65 and a 200 day moving average price of $41.62.

Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, August 17th. The manufacturing equipment provider reported $0.86 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.84 by $0.02. Applied Materials had a return on equity of 40.74% and a net margin of 22.08%. The business had revenue of $3.74 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.69 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.50 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 32.7% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts forecast that Applied Materials will post $3.21 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 14th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, August 24th will be issued a dividend of $0.10 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, August 22nd. This represents a $0.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.92%. Applied Materials’s payout ratio is currently 14.18%.

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Applied Materials Company Profile

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