Ensco Plc (NYSE:ESV) was the recipient of a significant drop in short interest in October. As of October 31st, there was short interest totalling 71,303,853 shares, a drop of 19.3% from the October 13th total of 88,320,926 shares. Currently, 16.4% of the shares of the stock are short sold. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 18,161,215 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.9 days.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS grew its holdings in shares of Ensco Plc by 0.3% during the second quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 47,676 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $246,000 after buying an additional 143 shares during the last quarter. HighTower Advisors LLC grew its holdings in shares of Ensco Plc by 2.2% during the first quarter. HighTower Advisors LLC now owns 23,177 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $209,000 after buying an additional 500 shares during the last quarter. Comerica Bank grew its holdings in shares of Ensco Plc by 0.3% during the second quarter. Comerica Bank now owns 259,039 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $1,386,000 after buying an additional 764 shares during the last quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas grew its holdings in shares of Ensco Plc by 3.9% during the second quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 25,029 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $129,000 after buying an additional 937 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Arizona State Retirement System grew its holdings in shares of Ensco Plc by 1.5% during the second quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 128,000 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock valued at $660,000 after buying an additional 1,900 shares during the last quarter. 91.09% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

A number of analysts have weighed in on ESV shares. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Ensco Plc from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 25th. BMO Capital Markets raised their target price on shares of Ensco Plc from $4.75 to $5.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research report on Friday, July 28th. UBS AG raised shares of Ensco Plc from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and raised their price target for the company from $6.00 to $8.00 in a research note on Monday, September 25th. Nordea Equity Research reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $8.00 price target on shares of Ensco Plc in a research note on Saturday, September 30th. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG initiated coverage on shares of Ensco Plc in a research note on Tuesday, October 10th. They set a “hold” rating and a $6.00 price target for the company. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $8.47.

Shares of Ensco Plc (NYSE ESV) opened at $5.45 on Monday. Ensco Plc has a 52 week low of $4.10 and a 52 week high of $12.04. The company has a quick ratio of 5.04, a current ratio of 5.04 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.58.

Ensco Plc (NYSE:ESV) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The offshore drilling services provider reported ($0.05) earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of ($0.16) by $0.11. Ensco Plc had a negative net margin of 3.04% and a negative return on equity of 0.37%. The firm had revenue of $460.00 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $457.79 million. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.28 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was down 16.1% compared to the same quarter last year. equities research analysts expect that Ensco Plc will post -0.49 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 15th. Shareholders of record on Monday, December 4th will be paid a $0.01 dividend. This represents a $0.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.73%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, December 1st. Ensco Plc’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently -21.05%.

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About Ensco Plc

Ensco plc is an offshore contract drilling company. The Company provides offshore contract drilling services to the international oil and gas industry. Its segments include Floaters, Jackups and Other. The Floaters segment includes its drillships and semisubmersible rigs, and provides contract drilling.

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