Pfizer, Inc. (NYSE:PFE) was the target of a significant growth in short interest in September. As of September 15th, there was short interest totalling 50,665,014 shares, a growth of 12.4% from the August 31st total of 45,068,122 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 20,991,377 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.4 days. Currently, 0.8% of the shares of the company are short sold.

Pfizer (PFE) opened at 36.14 on Wednesday. The company has a market capitalization of $214.94 billion, a P/E ratio of 26.44 and a beta of 1.00. Pfizer has a 52-week low of $29.83 and a 52-week high of $36.21. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $34.48 and a 200 day moving average price of $33.64.

Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 1st. The biopharmaceutical company reported $0.67 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.65 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $12.90 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $13.08 billion. Pfizer had a net margin of 15.84% and a return on equity of 24.51%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 1.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.64 EPS. On average, analysts predict that Pfizer will post $2.56 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 1st. Stockholders of record on Friday, November 10th will be issued a dividend of $0.32 per share. This represents a $1.28 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.54%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, November 9th. Pfizer’s dividend payout ratio is currently 94.12%.

In other Pfizer news, CEO Ian C. Read sold 96,950 shares of Pfizer stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $34.00, for a total value of $3,296,300.00. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Sally Susman sold 38,230 shares of Pfizer stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, September 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $35.00, for a total transaction of $1,338,050.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 145,649 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,097,715. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 464,521 shares of company stock worth $15,813,961 over the last 90 days. 0.06% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Janus Henderson Group PLC lifted its stake in Pfizer by 243.5% during the second quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 13,175,187 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock worth $442,574,000 after purchasing an additional 9,339,749 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Pfizer by 2.3% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 418,639,111 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $14,062,088,000 after purchasing an additional 9,239,499 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC bought a new position in shares of Pfizer during the 2nd quarter valued at about $268,389,000. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board increased its position in shares of Pfizer by 249.6% during the 2nd quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 10,713,626 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $359,871,000 after purchasing an additional 7,649,416 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its position in shares of Pfizer by 42.1% during the 2nd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 17,818,368 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $598,519,000 after purchasing an additional 5,281,314 shares during the last quarter. 69.00% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

A number of equities research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Credit Suisse Group downgraded shares of Pfizer from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and dropped their price target for the company from $38.00 to $36.00 in a research report on Thursday, July 20th. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “buy” rating and set a $37.00 price target on shares of Pfizer in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. Zacks Investment Research raised Pfizer from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, July 14th. Vetr lowered Pfizer from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $35.71 price objective on the stock. in a research note on Wednesday, September 13th. Finally, Morgan Stanley restated a “neutral” rating and set a $35.00 price objective (down previously from $38.00) on shares of Pfizer in a research note on Monday, June 12th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $38.25.

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About Pfizer

Pfizer Inc (Pfizer) is a research-based global biopharmaceutical company. The Company is engaged in the discovery, development and manufacture of healthcare products. Its global portfolio includes medicines and vaccines, as well as consumer healthcare products. The Company manages its commercial operations through two business segments: Pfizer Innovative Health (IH) and Pfizer Essential Health (EH).

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