Viacom, Inc. (NASDAQ:VIAB) was the target of unusually large options trading activity on Thursday. Stock investors acquired 29,087 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 4,165% compared to the typical daily volume of 682 put options.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc lifted its stake in shares of Viacom by 1.6% during the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 38,037,506 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,284,147,000 after buying an additional 585,381 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in Viacom by 1.0% in the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 27,578,297 shares of the company’s stock worth $708,764,000 after purchasing an additional 265,799 shares in the last quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC lifted its stake in Viacom by 9.6% in the 3rd quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 7,008,127 shares of the company’s stock worth $236,594,000 after purchasing an additional 612,741 shares in the last quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund lifted its stake in Viacom by 3,319.4% in the 4th quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 6,573,957 shares of the company’s stock worth $256,000 after purchasing an additional 6,381,702 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Capital World Investors lifted its stake in Viacom by 28.0% in the 3rd quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 5,482,488 shares of the company’s stock worth $185,089,000 after purchasing an additional 1,199,988 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 80.28% of the company’s stock.

VIAB has been the topic of several analyst reports. B. Riley dropped their price target on shares of Viacom from $39.00 to $30.00 in a research note on Friday, December 28th. Pivotal Research upgraded shares of Viacom from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $33.00 to $36.00 in a research note on Tuesday, January 15th. Barrington Research reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $35.00 price target on shares of Viacom in a research note on Tuesday, February 5th. TheStreet cut shares of Viacom from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research note on Wednesday, December 26th. Finally, BidaskClub upgraded shares of Viacom from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, January 12th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $34.71.

VIAB opened at $28.52 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.12, a quick ratio of 1.10 and a current ratio of 1.31. Viacom has a fifty-two week low of $23.31 and a fifty-two week high of $34.44. The firm has a market cap of $11.41 billion, a P/E ratio of 6.92, a PEG ratio of 0.84 and a beta of 1.46.

Viacom (NASDAQ:VIAB) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, February 5th. The company reported $1.12 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.02 by $0.10. Viacom had a net margin of 11.60% and a return on equity of 23.34%. The company had revenue of $3.09 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.12 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.03 EPS. Viacom’s revenue for the quarter was up .6% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, equities analysts expect that Viacom will post 4.21 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, April 1st. Investors of record on Friday, March 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.20 per share. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.81%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 14th. Viacom’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 19.42%.

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Viacom Company Profile

Viacom Inc operates media brands that create entertainment content worldwide. It operates through two segments, Media Networks and Filmed Entertainment. The Media Networks segment offers entertainment content, services, and related branded products for consumers through approximately 314 locally programmed and operated television channels, including Nickelodeon, MTV, BET, Comedy Central, Paramount Network, Nick Jr., VH1, TV Land, CMT, Logo, Channel 5, Milkshake!, Telefe, Colors, Paramount Channel, TeenNick, Nicktoons, Nick Music, MTV2, MTV Classic, MTV Live, BET Her, BET Gospel, and BET Hip Hop, as well as through online, mobile, and apps.

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