Popular Inc (NASDAQ:BPOP) was the target of a significant drop in short interest during the month of May. As of May 15th, there was short interest totalling 3,835,700 shares, a drop of 7.1% from the April 15th total of 4,129,200 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 571,800 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 6.7 days. Approximately 4.0% of the shares of the stock are short sold.
A number of analysts have recently weighed in on BPOP shares. BidaskClub raised Popular from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 7th. Zacks Investment Research raised Popular from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $64.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, April 23rd. Finally, BTIG Research increased their price objective on Popular to $66.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 23rd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has issued a hold rating, six have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $59.71.
Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in BPOP. Norges Bank purchased a new stake in Popular in the fourth quarter worth $64,758,000. APG Asset Management N.V. lifted its stake in Popular by 5,001.3% in the fourth quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 790,700 shares of the bank’s stock worth $32,661,000 after acquiring an additional 775,200 shares during the period. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its stake in Popular by 108.2% in the fourth quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,076,845 shares of the bank’s stock worth $50,847,000 after acquiring an additional 559,566 shares during the period. Principal Financial Group Inc. lifted its stake in Popular by 4,433.8% in the fourth quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 487,477 shares of the bank’s stock worth $23,018,000 after acquiring an additional 476,725 shares during the period. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc lifted its stake in Popular by 4.5% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 9,585,130 shares of the bank’s stock worth $491,239,000 after acquiring an additional 412,087 shares during the period. 89.41% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Popular (NASDAQ:BPOP) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 18th. The bank reported $1.69 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.45 by $0.24. The firm had revenue of $607.39 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $603.70 million. Popular had a return on equity of 10.58% and a net margin of 24.69%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.89 earnings per share. As a group, equities research analysts forecast that Popular will post 6.59 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 1st. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, May 28th will be paid a dividend of $0.30 per share. This represents a $1.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.27%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, May 24th. Popular’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 25.16%.
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Popular Company Profile
Popular, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides various retail, mortgage, and commercial banking products and services. The company accepts various deposit products. It also offers commercial and industrial loans; commercial real estate loans; residential mortgage loans; consumer loans, including personal loans, credit cards, automobile loans, home equity lines of credit, and other loans to individual borrowers; construction loans; and lease financing comprising automobile loans/leases.
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