Bemis Company, Inc. (NYSE:BMS) was the target of a large growth in short interest during the month of October. As of October 31st, there was short interest totalling 3,261,491 shares, a growth of 100.4% from the October 15th total of 1,627,590 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 971,257 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.4 days. Currently, 3.6% of the shares of the company are short sold.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund increased its position in Bemis by 3.0% in the 2nd quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 35,415 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $1,495,000 after acquiring an additional 1,023 shares during the period. OppenheimerFunds Inc. increased its position in Bemis by 3.9% in the 2nd quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 28,009 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $1,182,000 after acquiring an additional 1,042 shares during the period. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. increased its position in Bemis by 24.4% in the 2nd quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 5,481 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $231,000 after acquiring an additional 1,075 shares during the period. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB increased its position in Bemis by 10.5% in the 2nd quarter. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB now owns 12,660 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $534,000 after acquiring an additional 1,200 shares during the period. Finally, Arizona State Retirement System increased its position in Bemis by 2.3% in the 3rd quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 64,625 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $3,141,000 after acquiring an additional 1,462 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 72.16% of the company’s stock.

Several analysts have recently weighed in on the company. Royal Bank of Canada raised Bemis from an “underperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and boosted their target price for the company from $44.00 to $46.00 in a report on Wednesday, August 15th. UBS Group downgraded Bemis from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $54.00 target price for the company. in a report on Tuesday, August 7th. Robert W. Baird reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $57.00 target price (up from $48.00) on shares of Bemis in a report on Monday, August 6th. ValuEngine raised Bemis from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, July 26th. Finally, Barclays boosted their target price on Bemis from $52.00 to $55.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Monday, July 30th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. Bemis presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $49.50.

Bemis stock opened at $48.25 on Wednesday. Bemis has a fifty-two week low of $40.86 and a fifty-two week high of $53.00. The company has a quick ratio of 0.90, a current ratio of 1.78 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.21. The stock has a market capitalization of $4.38 billion, a PE ratio of 20.19, a PEG ratio of 2.35 and a beta of 0.92.

Bemis (NYSE:BMS) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 25th. The industrial products company reported $0.77 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.77. The firm had revenue of $1.03 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.02 billion. Bemis had a return on equity of 20.61% and a net margin of 2.72%. On average, equities research analysts expect that Bemis will post 2.8 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, December 3rd. Investors of record on Thursday, November 15th will be given a $0.31 dividend. This represents a $1.24 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.57%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 14th. Bemis’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 51.88%.

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About Bemis

Bemis Company, Inc manufactures and sells packaging products in the United States, Brazil, other Americas, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific. It operates through three segments: U.S. Packaging, Latin America Packaging, and Rest of World Packaging. The company offers multilayer polymer, blown, and cast film structures; and injection molded plastic, thermoformed plastic, and folding carton packaging products.

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