Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Liberty Property Trust (NYSE:LPT) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report released on Tuesday morning. They currently have $48.00 price objective on the real estate investment trust’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Liberty Property have outperformed the industry it belongs to, year to date. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year funds from operations (FFO) per share remained unchanged in the last month. The company’s premium quality industrial properties located in upscale locations will enable it to capitalize from the increasing demand amid an e-commerce boom. Also, it is poised for growth as fundamentals of the industrial real estate market remain robust, resulting in solid rent growth, enhanced occupancy and development opportunities. Notably, the company’s industrial portfolio was 95.9% leased at the end of second-quarter 2017, reflecting strong demand for space. However, adverse near-term impact on earnings from dispositions and rise in interest rates remain concerns.”

LPT has been the topic of a number of other reports. KeyCorp reaffirmed a hold rating on shares of Liberty Property Trust in a report on Friday, August 25th. Stifel Nicolaus reissued a buy rating and issued a $44.00 price target on shares of Liberty Property Trust in a research note on Thursday, July 6th. Finally, BidaskClub cut Liberty Property Trust from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 21st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. Liberty Property Trust currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $43.60.

Shares of Liberty Property Trust (NYSE:LPT) opened at 42.77 on Tuesday. Liberty Property Trust has a 52-week low of $36.22 and a 52-week high of $43.04. The stock has a market capitalization of $6.30 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.29 and a beta of 0.88. The company has a 50 day moving average of $41.86 and a 200 day moving average of $40.78.

Liberty Property Trust (NYSE:LPT) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, July 25th. The real estate investment trust reported $0.65 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.62 by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $183.13 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $175.60 million. Liberty Property Trust had a return on equity of 11.37% and a net margin of 47.24%. Liberty Property Trust’s revenue was down 1.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.68 earnings per share. Analysts predict that Liberty Property Trust will post $1.24 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Sunday, October 15th. Investors of record on Monday, October 2nd will be paid a $0.40 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, September 29th. This represents a $1.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.74%. Liberty Property Trust’s dividend payout ratio is currently 68.38%.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Achmea Investment Management B.V. boosted its position in Liberty Property Trust by 6.1% during the 2nd quarter. Achmea Investment Management B.V. now owns 49,592 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $2,016,000 after acquiring an additional 2,860 shares during the period. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd boosted its position in Liberty Property Trust by 31.8% during the 2nd quarter. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd now owns 9,486 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $386,000 after acquiring an additional 2,286 shares during the period. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. boosted its position in Liberty Property Trust by 0.8% during the 2nd quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. now owns 86,453 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $3,519,000 after acquiring an additional 722 shares during the period. Americafirst Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in Liberty Property Trust during the 2nd quarter worth about $486,000. Finally, 361 Capital LLC boosted its position in Liberty Property Trust by 38.9% during the 2nd quarter. 361 Capital LLC now owns 203,086 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $8,268,000 after acquiring an additional 56,854 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 91.67% of the company’s stock.

About Liberty Property Trust

Liberty Property Trust (the Trust) is a self-administered and self-managed Maryland real estate investment trust (REIT). The Trust’s assets are owned directly or indirectly, and substantially all of the Trust’s operations are conducted directly or indirectly, by its subsidiary, Liberty Property Limited Partnership (the Operating Partnership).

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Analyst Recommendations for Liberty Property Trust (NYSE:LPT)

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