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Shares of Rent-A-Center (NASDAQ:RCII) were the target of a significant decline in short interest in May. As of May 15th, there was short interest totalling 9,365,323 shares, a decline of 11.1% from the April 30th total of 10,537,037 shares, Stock Ratings Network reports. Approximately 18.3% of the company’s stock are short sold. Based on an average trading volume of 540,019 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 17.3 days.

A number of research firms have recently commented on RCII. Analysts at TheStreet upgraded shares of Rent-A-Center from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 14th. Separately, analysts at Zacks upgraded shares of Rent-A-Center from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 29th. They now have a $31.00 price target on the stock. Finally, analysts at Gilford Securities upgraded shares of Rent-A-Center from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 24th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $33.00.

Shares of Rent-A-Center (NASDAQ:RCII) opened at 28.315 on Wednesday. Rent-A-Center has a 1-year low of $23.65 and a 1-year high of $40.80. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $28.46 and its 200-day moving average is $28.88. The company has a market cap of $1.495 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.68.

Rent-A-Center (NASDAQ:RCII) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Monday, April 21st. The company reported $0.57 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the analysts’ consensus estimate of $0.56 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $833.00 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $840.31 million. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.80 earnings per share. Rent-A-Center’s revenue was up 1.7% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts predict that Rent-A-Center will post $2.32 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Thursday, July 24th. Investors of record on Wednesday, July 2nd will be paid a dividend of $0.23 per share. This represents a $0.92 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.25%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, June 30th.

Rent-A-Center, Inc is a rent-to-own operator in North America. It provides the customers the ownership of durable products, such as consumer electronics, appliances, computers, furniture and accessories, under rental purchase agreements with no long-term obligation.

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