Safe Bulkers, Inc. (NYSE:SB) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a note issued to investors on Friday. The firm currently has a $2.50 price objective on the shipping company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price objective would suggest a potential upside of 17.37% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “SAFE BULKERS is an international provider of marine drybulk transportation services, transporting bulk cargoes, particularly grain, iron ore and coal, along worldwide shipping routes for some of the world’s largest consumers of marine drybulk transportation services. “

SB has been the subject of several other reports. DNB Markets upgraded Safe Bulkers from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, January 27th. Stifel Nicolaus began coverage on Safe Bulkers in a report on Friday, January 20th. They issued a “hold” rating and a $1.50 price target for the company. Evercore ISI upgraded Safe Bulkers from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, February 24th. Finally, Morgan Stanley upgraded Safe Bulkers from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and increased their price target for the company from $1.30 to $3.00 in a report on Tuesday, March 28th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $1.80.

Analyst Recommendations for Safe Bulkers (NYSE:SB)

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Shares of Safe Bulkers (NYSE:SB) opened at 2.13 on Friday. The stock’s market cap is $211.16 million. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $1.98 and a 200-day moving average price of $1.53. Safe Bulkers has a 52-week low of $0.86 and a 52-week high of $2.60.

Safe Bulkers (NYSE:SB) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 23rd. The shipping company reported ($0.09) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of ($0.10) by $0.01. Safe Bulkers had a negative return on equity of 6.57% and a negative net margin of 75.21%. The firm earned $32.94 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $31.20 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned ($0.13) EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 5.6% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts anticipate that Safe Bulkers will post ($0.29) EPS for the current fiscal year.

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A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Berson & Corrado Investment Advisors LLC bought a new stake in shares of Safe Bulkers during the first quarter valued at about $221,000. Renaissance Technologies LLC increased its stake in shares of Safe Bulkers by 107.0% in the fourth quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 291,700 shares of the shipping company’s stock valued at $335,000 after buying an additional 150,800 shares in the last quarter. Phoenix Investment Adviser LLC increased its stake in shares of Safe Bulkers by 43.0% in the third quarter. Phoenix Investment Adviser LLC now owns 340,120 shares of the shipping company’s stock valued at $480,000 after buying an additional 102,232 shares in the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. acquired a new stake in shares of Safe Bulkers during the fourth quarter valued at $1,412,000. Finally, GSA Capital Partners LLP acquired a new stake in shares of Safe Bulkers during the fourth quarter valued at $2,229,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 12.91% of the company’s stock.

About Safe Bulkers

Safe Bulkers, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s principal business is the acquisition, ownership and operation of drybulk vessels. The Company’s vessels operate across the world, carrying drybulk cargo for the consumers of marine drybulk transportation services. The Company is an international provider of marine drybulk transportation services, transporting bulk cargoes, particularly coal, grain and iron ore, along shipping routes across the world.

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