Short Interest in VEREIT (VER) Rises By 17.6%

VEREIT (NYSE:VER) saw a large growth in short interest in the month of March. As of March 29th, there was short interest totalling 32,682,711 shares, a growth of 17.6% from the March 15th total of 27,795,856 shares. Approximately 3.4% of the company’s stock are short sold. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 8,282,404 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.9 days.

VER stock opened at $6.67 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.63, a current ratio of 0.33 and a quick ratio of 0.33. VEREIT has a 1 year low of $6.62 and a 1 year high of $8.94. The firm has a market capitalization of $6,518.05, a P/E ratio of 9.53 and a beta of 0.56.

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VEREIT (NYSE:VER) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 22nd. The financial services provider reported $0.18 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.17 by $0.01. VEREIT had a net margin of 2.38% and a return on equity of 0.75%. The business had revenue of $316.60 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $284.78 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.18 EPS. VEREIT’s quarterly revenue was down 3.3% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts forecast that VEREIT will post 0.7 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, April 16th. Investors of record on Friday, March 30th will be paid a $0.138 dividend. This represents a $0.55 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 8.28%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, March 28th. VEREIT’s payout ratio is presently 78.57%.

A number of equities research analysts have issued reports on VER shares. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of VEREIT from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Saturday, January 13th. ValuEngine lowered shares of VEREIT from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, February 2nd. Mizuho reissued a “hold” rating and set a $7.00 target price on shares of VEREIT in a research note on Friday, March 2nd. Finally, JMP Securities decreased their target price on shares of VEREIT from $9.50 to $9.00 and set a “market outperform” rating for the company in a research note on Friday, February 23rd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $8.56.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in VER. Nationwide Fund Advisors acquired a new stake in shares of VEREIT in the 3rd quarter valued at $3,176,000. Wells Fargo & Company MN lifted its stake in shares of VEREIT by 127.4% in the 3rd quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 2,600,611 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $21,559,000 after purchasing an additional 1,457,184 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its stake in shares of VEREIT by 2.8% in the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 13,942,160 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $115,581,000 after purchasing an additional 375,844 shares during the last quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC lifted its stake in shares of VEREIT by 47.8% in the 3rd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 252,303 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $2,093,000 after purchasing an additional 81,587 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC lifted its stake in shares of VEREIT by 169.7% in the 3rd quarter. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC now owns 108,143 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $897,000 after purchasing an additional 68,041 shares during the last quarter. 86.13% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About VEREIT

VEREIT is a full-service real estate operating company which owns and manages one of the largest portfolios of single-tenant commercial properties in the U.S. The Company has a total asset book value of $14.7 billion including approximately 4,100 properties and 94.4 million square feet. VEREIT's business model provides equity capital to creditworthy corporations in return for long-term leases on their properties.

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