Symantec Sees Unusually Large Options Volume (SYMC)

Symantec Co. (NASDAQ:SYMC) saw unusually large options trading activity on Thursday. Investors acquired 24,386 put options on the stock. This is an increase of approximately 669% compared to the average daily volume of 3,172 put options.

In other Symantec news, EVP Scott C. Taylor sold 41,284 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, April 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $27.61, for a total transaction of $1,139,851.24. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 188,426 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,202,441.86. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Company insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of SYMC. American International Group Inc. raised its holdings in Symantec by 12.8% in the fourth quarter. American International Group Inc. now owns 245,761 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $6,896,000 after acquiring an additional 27,819 shares in the last quarter. First Republic Investment Management Inc. raised its holdings in Symantec by 47.8% in the fourth quarter. First Republic Investment Management Inc. now owns 16,926 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $475,000 after acquiring an additional 5,471 shares in the last quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. raised its holdings in Symantec by 32.8% in the fourth quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 24,729 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $694,000 after acquiring an additional 6,109 shares in the last quarter. Standard Life Aberdeen plc raised its holdings in Symantec by 7.6% in the fourth quarter. Standard Life Aberdeen plc now owns 251,716 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $7,064,000 after acquiring an additional 17,708 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Amalgamated Bank raised its holdings in Symantec by 9.7% in the fourth quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 80,881 shares of the technology company’s stock valued at $2,270,000 after acquiring an additional 7,165 shares in the last quarter. 94.56% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Several research analysts have weighed in on the stock. BidaskClub lowered shares of Symantec from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 22nd. Credit Suisse Group lowered their target price on shares of Symantec from $30.00 to $26.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research note on Friday, May 11th. Piper Jaffray Companies lowered shares of Symantec from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, May 10th. UBS Group lowered shares of Symantec from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research note on Friday, May 11th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Symantec from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 16th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $27.60.

Shares of SYMC opened at $20.65 on Friday. The stock has a market cap of $12.51 billion, a PE ratio of 21.74, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.98 and a beta of 0.81. Symantec has a 1 year low of $18.85 and a 1 year high of $34.20. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.99, a quick ratio of 1.15 and a current ratio of 1.11.

Symantec (NASDAQ:SYMC) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 10th. The technology company reported $0.46 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.39 by $0.07. The business had revenue of $1.23 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.19 billion. Symantec had a net margin of 23.98% and a return on equity of 16.24%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 4.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.28 earnings per share. analysts predict that Symantec will post 0.86 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, June 20th. Stockholders of record on Friday, June 8th were given a dividend of $0.075 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, June 7th. This represents a $0.30 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.45%. Symantec’s dividend payout ratio is presently 31.58%.

About Symantec

Symantec Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides cybersecurity solutions worldwide. It operates through two segments, Consumer Digital Safety and Enterprise Security. The Consumer Digital Safety segment provides Norton-branded services that provide multi-layer security services across desktop and mobile operating systems, public Wi-Fi connections, and home networks to defend against online threats to individuals, families, and small businesses.

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