Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL lowered its stake in Noble Corporation (NYSE:NE) by 20.0% during the third quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 68,533 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock after selling 17,140 shares during the quarter. Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL’s holdings in Noble were worth $315,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of the stock. BlackRock Inc. grew its stake in Noble by 37.6% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 32,390,455 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $117,253,000 after acquiring an additional 8,843,373 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its stake in Noble by 16.7% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 23,523,527 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $85,155,000 after acquiring an additional 3,371,015 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp grew its stake in Noble by 31.7% during the 2nd quarter. State Street Corp now owns 22,444,196 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $81,248,000 after acquiring an additional 5,405,697 shares in the last quarter. Contrarius Investment Management Ltd grew its stake in Noble by 21.7% during the 3rd quarter. Contrarius Investment Management Ltd now owns 6,631,412 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $30,504,000 after acquiring an additional 1,184,494 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp grew its stake in Noble by 2.6% during the 2nd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 5,645,549 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $20,437,000 after acquiring an additional 145,172 shares in the last quarter. 87.10% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Noble Corporation (NYSE:NE) traded up $0.10 on Wednesday, reaching $4.25. The company had a trading volume of 4,093,400 shares, compared to its average volume of 10,129,968. Noble Corporation has a 12-month low of $3.14 and a 12-month high of $7.80. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.64, a current ratio of 1.58 and a quick ratio of 1.58.

Noble (NYSE:NE) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, November 2nd. The oil and gas company reported ($0.36) earnings per share for the quarter, hitting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.36). Noble had a negative return on equity of 3.94% and a negative net margin of 136.22%. The firm had revenue of $266.20 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $269.61 million. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned ($0.23) EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 30.9% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts expect that Noble Corporation will post -1.17 earnings per share for the current year.

Several equities analysts have weighed in on NE shares. Argus reaffirmed a “sell” rating and set a $6.00 target price on shares of Noble in a research note on Friday, August 18th. Royal Bank of Canada raised Noble from an “underperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and set a $5.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Friday, August 25th. ValuEngine raised Noble from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, September 1st. Cowen reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $3.00 price target on shares of Noble in a research note on Tuesday, September 5th. Finally, UBS raised Noble from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price target for the company from $4.00 to $6.00 in a research note on Monday, September 25th. Six analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seventeen have given a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $5.56.

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About Noble

Noble Corporation is an offshore drilling contractor for the oil and gas industry. The Company performs contract drilling services with its fleet of 79 mobile offshore drilling units and one floating production storage and offloading unit (NYSE:NE) located globally.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Noble (NYSE:NE)

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