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Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS) was upgraded by EVA Dimensions LLC from a “hold” rating to an “overweight” rating in a research note issued on Thursday, AmericanBankingNews.com reports.

In other Essex Property Trust news, Director Gary Martin sold 1,000 shares of the stock on the open market in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $168.66, for a total value of $168,660.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 5,000 shares in the company, valued at approximately $843,300. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link.

A number of other firms have also recently commented on ESS. Analysts at Cantor Fitzgerald downgraded shares of Essex Property Trust from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday. They now have a $5.00 price target on the stock, down previously from $171.00. Separately, analysts at Stifel Nicolaus upgraded shares of Essex Property Trust from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 2nd. They now have a $165.00 price target on the stock. Finally, analysts at MLV Capital cut their price target on shares of Essex Property Trust from $173.00 to $161.00 in a research note on Friday, December 20th. They now have a “hold” rating on the stock. Six analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company. Essex Property Trust has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $152.70.

Shares of Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS) traded down 0.25% during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $165.26. 23,581 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Essex Property Trust has a one year low of $137.53 and a one year high of $172.16. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $156.6 and a 200-day moving average of $153.2. The company has a market cap of $6.184 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 198.65.

Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, January 31st. The company reported $1.94 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the analysts’ consensus estimate of $1.95 by $0.01. On average, analysts predict that Essex Property Trust will post $8.31 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Monday, March 31st. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 14th will be given a dividend of $1.21 per share. This represents a $4.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.92%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, March 12th.

Essex Property Trust, Inc (NYSE:ESS) operates as a self-administered and self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT).

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