Preferred Apartment Communities Inc. (NYSE:APTS) saw a significant growth in short interest in the month of December. As of December 15th, there was short interest totalling 1,736,034 shares, a growth of 93.6% from the November 30th total of 896,744 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 604,363 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.9 days. Currently, 4.8% of the company’s shares are sold short.

Shares of Preferred Apartment Communities (APTS) opened at $19.00 on Monday. Preferred Apartment Communities has a 12-month low of $12.42 and a 12-month high of $22.71. The firm has a market cap of $620.71, a PE ratio of -19.00, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.72 and a beta of 0.43. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.05, a quick ratio of 0.07 and a current ratio of 0.07.

Preferred Apartment Communities (NYSE:APTS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Monday, October 30th. The real estate investment trust reported ($0.49) earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.31) by ($0.18). Preferred Apartment Communities had a net margin of 10.49% and a return on equity of 2.78%. The company had revenue of $74.90 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $67.86 million. equities research analysts anticipate that Preferred Apartment Communities will post 1.45 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 15th will be given a dividend of $0.25 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, December 14th. This is a boost from Preferred Apartment Communities’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.24. This represents a $1.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 5.26%. Preferred Apartment Communities’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently -100.00%.

In other Preferred Apartment Communities news, insider Michael Joseph Cronin sold 2,500 shares of Preferred Apartment Communities stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $21.25, for a total transaction of $53,125.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 16,460 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $349,775. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Daniel M. Dupree sold 17,000 shares of Preferred Apartment Communities stock in a transaction dated Thursday, November 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $21.08, for a total transaction of $358,360.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 99,564 shares in the company, valued at $2,098,809.12. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have acquired 1,850 shares of company stock worth $39,349 and have sold 21,500 shares worth $452,685. 3.11% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Schroder Investment Management Group acquired a new position in shares of Preferred Apartment Communities in the second quarter valued at approximately $113,000. Legal & General Group Plc grew its holdings in shares of Preferred Apartment Communities by 13.3% in the second quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 7,188 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $113,000 after purchasing an additional 845 shares in the last quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Preferred Apartment Communities in the third quarter valued at approximately $118,000. Citigroup Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Preferred Apartment Communities by 338.2% in the second quarter. Citigroup Inc. now owns 11,831 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $187,000 after purchasing an additional 9,131 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Hancock Holding Co. acquired a new position in shares of Preferred Apartment Communities in the second quarter valued at approximately $199,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 51.99% of the company’s stock.

A number of equities analysts have commented on the stock. BidaskClub raised shares of Preferred Apartment Communities from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, November 14th. B. Riley reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and set a $17.00 target price (up from $16.00) on shares of Preferred Apartment Communities in a research note on Thursday, November 2nd. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Preferred Apartment Communities from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 3rd. ValuEngine raised shares of Preferred Apartment Communities from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Sunday, December 31st. Finally, National Securities lifted their price target on shares of Preferred Apartment Communities from $20.00 to $26.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 29th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, two have assigned a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company. Preferred Apartment Communities has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $20.40.

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Preferred Apartment Communities Company Profile

Preferred Apartment Communities, Inc is a real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company is formed to acquire and operate multifamily properties in select targeted markets throughout the United States. It operates through segments, including multifamily communities, real estate related financing, new market properties and office buildings.

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