Highwoods Properties (HIW) Lowered to “Sell” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Highwoods Properties (NYSE:HIW) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report report published on Wednesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Highwoods have underperformed its industry in the past three months. Moreover, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2018 funds from operations (FFO) per share was revised downward in two months’ time. Notably, significant exposure to office assets amid rising supply as well as persistent space efficiency trends and stiff competition remain concerns for the company. Additionally, Highwoods’ assets are concentrated in a few markets which make it vulnerable to the economic and political doldrums prevalent in the area. However, the company’s efforts to fortify its high-quality office asset portfolio in best business districts (BBDs) have the capability to drive long-term growth. Further, with the recovery in the job market, demand is likely to increase for office spaces.”

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HIW has been the topic of several other research reports. ValuEngine cut Highwoods Properties from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Friday, February 2nd. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $46.00 target price (down previously from $50.00) on shares of Highwoods Properties in a research note on Tuesday, March 13th. Finally, SunTrust Banks raised Highwoods Properties from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $51.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Friday, March 9th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $51.67.

NYSE:HIW opened at $42.95 on Wednesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.91, a quick ratio of 1.40 and a current ratio of 1.40. Highwoods Properties has a fifty-two week low of $41.34 and a fifty-two week high of $53.34. The stock has a market cap of $4,394.74, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.09, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 4.15 and a beta of 0.74.

Highwoods Properties (NYSE:HIW) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, February 6th. The real estate investment trust reported $0.55 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.83 by ($0.28). Highwoods Properties had a net margin of 26.20% and a return on equity of 8.46%. The business had revenue of $175.86 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $177.14 million. equities analysts forecast that Highwoods Properties will post 3.42 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB acquired a new stake in shares of Highwoods Properties during the 4th quarter valued at about $225,000. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Highwoods Properties by 632.1% during the 4th quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 21,393 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $1,089,000 after buying an additional 18,471 shares during the last quarter. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Highwoods Properties during the 4th quarter valued at about $3,326,000. Jump Trading LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Highwoods Properties during the 4th quarter valued at about $442,000. Finally, BB&T Securities LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Highwoods Properties during the 4th quarter valued at about $200,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 96.55% of the company’s stock.

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Highwoods Properties Company Profile

Highwoods Properties, Inc, headquartered in Raleigh, is a publicly-traded (NYSE:HIW) real estate investment trust (?REIT?) and a member of the S&P MidCap 400 Index. The Company is a fully-integrated office REIT that owns, develops, acquires, leases and manages properties primarily in the best business districts (BBDs) of Atlanta, Greensboro, Memphis, Nashville, Orlando, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, Richmond and Tampa.

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