Steel Dynamics, Inc. (NASDAQ:STLD) was the target of a significant decline in short interest during the month of July. As of July 14th, there was short interest totalling 6,748,188 shares, a decline of 14.5% from the June 30th total of 7,891,565 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 2,906,196 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 2.3 days. Currently, 2.9% of the shares of the company are sold short.

Several equities analysts recently commented on STLD shares. Credit Suisse Group upgraded shares of Steel Dynamics from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $36.00 target price for the company in a research note on Wednesday, May 24th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Steel Dynamics from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $37.00 target price for the company in a research note on Friday, April 21st. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $45.00 target price on shares of Steel Dynamics in a research note on Monday, June 26th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Steel Dynamics from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, July 1st. Finally, Macquarie upgraded shares of Steel Dynamics from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and upped their target price for the company from $38.00 to $44.00 in a research note on Monday, April 24th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fifteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $39.79.

Shares of Steel Dynamics (NASDAQ STLD) opened at 36.52 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $8.81 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.78 and a beta of 1.25. Steel Dynamics has a one year low of $22.79 and a one year high of $40.17. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $35.48 and a 200 day moving average of $35.28.

Steel Dynamics (NASDAQ:STLD) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, July 19th. The basic materials company reported $0.63 earnings per share for the quarter, hitting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.63. Steel Dynamics had a return on equity of 21.75% and a net margin of 6.07%. The company had revenue of $2.39 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.37 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.58 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up 18.1% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts anticipate that Steel Dynamics will post $2.84 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, July 7th. Stockholders of record on Friday, June 30th were issued a dividend of $0.155 per share. This represents a $0.62 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.70%. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, June 28th. Steel Dynamics’s dividend payout ratio is currently 28.57%.

In related news, Director Keith E. Busse sold 4,965 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, July 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.42, for a total transaction of $190,755.30. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 1,005,666 shares in the company, valued at approximately $38,637,687.72. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Christopher A. Graham sold 5,021 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, July 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.05, for a total transaction of $191,049.05. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 26,778 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,018,902.90. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 4.20% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of STLD. Nordea Investment Management AB purchased a new stake in Steel Dynamics during the first quarter worth $1,546,000. Hennessy Advisors Inc. purchased a new stake in Steel Dynamics during the first quarter worth $3,639,000. Airain ltd increased its stake in Steel Dynamics by 855.0% in the first quarter. Airain ltd now owns 245,479 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $8,533,000 after buying an additional 219,774 shares in the last quarter. Affinity Wealth Management purchased a new stake in Steel Dynamics during the first quarter worth $265,000. Finally, KBC Group NV purchased a new stake in Steel Dynamics during the first quarter worth $790,000. 83.63% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Steel Dynamics

Steel Dynamics, Inc is a steel producing and a metal recycling company. The Company is engaged in the manufacture and sale of steel products, processing and sale of recycled ferrous and nonferrous metals, and fabrication and sale of steel joists and deck products. Its segments include steel operations, metals recycling operations, steel fabrication operations and Other Operations.

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