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Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) was the recipient of a significant decline in short interest in the month of June. As of June 13th, there was short interest totalling 71,699,600 shares, a decline of 7.3% from the May 30th total of 77,360,636 shares, AnalystRatings.NET reports. Based on an average daily volume of 14,847,620 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 4.8 days. Approximately 5.9% of the shares of the company are sold short.

In other Applied Materials news, Director Thomas J. Iannotti sold 20,000 shares of the stock on the open market in a transaction that occurred on Friday, June 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $22.73, for a total transaction of $454,600.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link.

Several analysts have recently commented on the stock. Analysts at Stifel Nicolaus raised their price target on shares of Applied Materials from $23.00 to $25.00 in a research note on Friday. They now have a “buy” rating on the stock. Separately, analysts at Deutsche Bank raised their price target on shares of Applied Materials from $18.00 to $22.00 in a research note on Friday. They now have a “hold” rating on the stock. Finally, analysts at Citigroup Inc. reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Applied Materials in a research note on Wednesday, June 25th. They now have a $26.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $22.00. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating, ten have issued a buy rating and three have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. Applied Materials presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $21.64.

Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) opened at 22.585 on Monday. Applied Materials has a one year low of $14.62 and a one year high of $23.22. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $20.94 and its 200-day moving average is $19.06. The company has a market cap of $27.495 billion and a P/E ratio of 32.30.

Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) last released its earnings data on Thursday, May 15th. The company reported $0.28 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.28. The company had revenue of $2.35 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.35 billion. Analysts expect that Applied Materials will post $1.06 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Thursday, September 11th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, August 21st will be given a dividend of $0.10 per share. This represents a $0.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.79%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, August 19th.

Applied Materials, Inc (NASDAQ:AMAT) provides manufacturing equipment, services and software to the global semiconductor, flat panel display, solar photovoltaic (PV) and related industries.

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