Piedmont Office Realty Trust, Inc. (NYSE:PDM) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Saturday.

According to Zacks, “Piedmont Office Realty Trust, Inc. is an integrated and self-managed real estate investment trust specializing in the acquisition, ownership, management and development of commercial real estate properties. That includes properties that are under construction, newly constructed, or have operating histories. The Company is primarily focused on high-quality Class A office buildings located in major U.S. markets and leased primarily to high-credit quality tenants. Major markets include: Washington, D.C., greater Los Angeles, the New York metropolitan area, Boston and Chicago. Piedmont conducts business primarily through Piedmont Operating Partnership, LP; a Delaware limited partnership, as well as performing the management of its buildings through two wholly-owned subsidiaries, Piedmont Government Services, LLC and Piedmont Office Management, LLC. Piedmont OP owns a majority of its properties directly and a limited number through joint ventures with real estate limited partnerships with other third parties. “

A number of other research analysts have also commented on the company. ValuEngine lowered Piedmont Office Realty Trust from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, June 29th. BidaskClub lowered Piedmont Office Realty Trust from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Saturday, June 24th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and four have assigned a hold rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $22.50.

Shares of Piedmont Office Realty Trust (NYSE:PDM) opened at 20.61 on Friday. Piedmont Office Realty Trust has a 52-week low of $18.61 and a 52-week high of $23.08. The firm has a market cap of $3.00 billion, a P/E ratio of 28.66 and a beta of 0.60. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $21.34 and its 200-day moving average is $21.52.

Piedmont Office Realty Trust (NYSE:PDM) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 3rd. The real estate investment trust reported $0.10 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.44 by $0.34. Piedmont Office Realty Trust had a return on equity of 5.26% and a net margin of 19.89%. The business had revenue of $148.50 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $145.35 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.41 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 7.6% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts anticipate that Piedmont Office Realty Trust will post $0.40 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 16th. Stockholders of record on Friday, May 26th were given a dividend of $0.21 per share. This represents a $0.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.08%. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, May 24th. Piedmont Office Realty Trust’s dividend payout ratio is presently 109.09%.

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In other news, CAO Laura P. Moon sold 7,800 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $21.64, for a total transaction of $168,792.00. Following the sale, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 24,620 shares in the company, valued at $532,776.80. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Insiders own 0.76% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Westpac Banking Corp boosted its stake in Piedmont Office Realty Trust by 3.6% in the first quarter. Westpac Banking Corp now owns 224,900 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $4,808,000 after buying an additional 7,900 shares in the last quarter. James Investment Research Inc. purchased a new stake in Piedmont Office Realty Trust during the first quarter worth about $141,000. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in Piedmont Office Realty Trust by 0.6% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 2,103,779 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $43,989,000 after buying an additional 11,911 shares in the last quarter. Credit Agricole S A boosted its stake in Piedmont Office Realty Trust by 30.5% in the fourth quarter. Credit Agricole S A now owns 99,710 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $2,085,000 after buying an additional 23,315 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Norges Bank purchased a new stake in Piedmont Office Realty Trust during the fourth quarter worth about $29,672,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 86.79% of the company’s stock.

About Piedmont Office Realty Trust

Piedmont Office Realty Trust, Inc is an integrated self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company’s business consists primarily of owning, managing, operating, leasing, acquiring, developing, investing in, and disposing of office real estate assets. As of December 31, 2016, the Company owned and operated 65 in-service office properties, one redevelopment asset, two development assets and one office building through an unconsolidated joint venture.

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