Cantor Fitzgerald reaffirmed their buy rating on shares of Essex Property Trust, Inc. (NYSE:ESS) in a research report released on Wednesday. They currently have a $279.00 price target on the real estate investment trust’s stock.

“Estimate Update. We have lowered our 2017 and 2018 FFO/sh. ests to $11.87 and $12.50 from $11.90 and $12.51. Our 2017 and 2018 core FFO/sh. ests are $11.89 and $12.52 vs. $11.90 and $12.53 prior. Our NAV/sh. est is $265.50 vs. $260.10 prior and is based upon an applied cap rate of 4.42%. Our 2017 and 2018 SSNOI assumptions are 4.1% and 3.5% vs. 4.2% and 4.3% prior. Changes in the ESS’s 2017 market-level forecast include lower economic rent growth (-80bps vs. prior to 2.7%), with declines for all the markets, lower job growth (-40bps to 1.4%) and lower supply (-10bps to 1.2%). According to ESS, market rents in the Q were impacted by supply and decline in job growth leading to higher concessions with limited visibility. ESS expects new deliveries to peak in its markets in the next few months and expects a 5-10% y/y decline in 2018 (25% decline in Northern CA and 5% in Seattle, while 5% increase in southern CA – increases in downtown LA and San Diego, and west LA, declines in Orange County). The company expects 2018 market rent growth to be approx. 3.0% and that revenues could lag market rent growth reflecting loss to lease.”,” Cantor Fitzgerald’s analyst wrote.

Several other brokerages have also issued reports on ESS. Stifel Nicolaus assumed coverage on Essex Property Trust in a research note on Friday, September 1st. They issued a buy rating and a $294.00 target price for the company. Mizuho lowered Essex Property Trust from a buy rating to a neutral rating and set a $283.00 target price for the company. in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Canaccord Genuity set a $270.00 target price on Essex Property Trust and gave the stock a hold rating in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Robert W. Baird reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $273.00 target price on shares of Essex Property Trust in a research note on Tuesday, September 12th. Finally, BidaskClub raised Essex Property Trust from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 22nd. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating, seven have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $266.87.

Shares of Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS) traded down $1.84 on Wednesday, reaching $256.95. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 251,731 shares, compared to its average volume of 348,059. The stock has a market capitalization of $16,839.44, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.80, a P/E/G ratio of 3.61 and a beta of 0.54. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.88, a quick ratio of 1.83 and a current ratio of 0.83. Essex Property Trust has a 1-year low of $208.92 and a 1-year high of $270.04.

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The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 16th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 29th were paid a dividend of $1.75 per share. This represents a $7.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.72%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, September 28th. Essex Property Trust’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 87.61%.

In related news, Director Gary P. Martin sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $255.59, for a total transaction of $255,590.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 6,236 shares in the company, valued at $1,593,859.24. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Michael J. Schall sold 333 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $257.92, for a total value of $85,887.36. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 45,096 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $11,631,160.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 10,480 shares of company stock valued at $2,774,961. 3.30% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Quantitative Systematic Strategies LLC bought a new position in shares of Essex Property Trust during the third quarter valued at approximately $807,000. LMR Partners LLP raised its holdings in shares of Essex Property Trust by 15.7% during the second quarter. LMR Partners LLP now owns 3,263 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $840,000 after acquiring an additional 443 shares in the last quarter. NN Investment Partners Holdings N.V. raised its holdings in shares of Essex Property Trust by 4.0% during the second quarter. NN Investment Partners Holdings N.V. now owns 240,093 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $61,769,000 after acquiring an additional 9,300 shares in the last quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Essex Property Trust by 4.3% during the second quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 2,247,592 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $578,237,000 after acquiring an additional 91,814 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. bought a new position in shares of Essex Property Trust during the second quarter valued at approximately $2,102,000. Institutional investors own 99.98% of the company’s stock.

About Essex Property Trust

Essex Property Trust, Inc is a self-administered and self-managed real estate investment trust. The Company is engaged primarily in the ownership, operation, management, acquisition, development and redevelopment of predominantly apartment communities, located along the West Coast. Its segments include Southern California, Northern California, Seattle Metro and Other real estate assets.

Analyst Recommendations for Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS)

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