AK Steel Holding Corporation (NYSE:AKS) was the target of unusually large options trading activity on Friday. Stock investors acquired 25,412 put options on the company. This represents an increase of 297% compared to the average daily volume of 6,395 put options.

A number of brokerages have recently weighed in on AKS. Barclays PLC restated an “equal weight” rating and issued a $7.00 price objective (down from $8.00) on shares of AK Steel Holding Corporation in a research note on Wednesday, August 9th. Clarkson Capital upgraded shares of AK Steel Holding Corporation from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 26th. Longbow Research cut shares of AK Steel Holding Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and boosted their price objective for the stock from $6.20 to $6.24 in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. BMO Capital Markets set a $7.00 price objective on shares of AK Steel Holding Corporation and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Sunday, July 30th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC restated a “buy” rating on shares of AK Steel Holding Corporation in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating, seven have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. AK Steel Holding Corporation currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $8.06.

Shares of AK Steel Holding Corporation (NYSE AKS) opened at 5.11 on Monday. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $6.08 and a 200 day moving average of $6.83. The company has a market cap of $1.61 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.38 and a beta of 2.86. AK Steel Holding Corporation has a one year low of $3.87 and a one year high of $11.39.

AK Steel Holding Corporation (NYSE:AKS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 25th. The basic materials company reported $0.19 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.13 by $0.06. AK Steel Holding Corporation had a return on equity of 735.25% and a net margin of 1.88%. The business had revenue of $1.56 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.55 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.08 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 4.4% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts anticipate that AK Steel Holding Corporation will post $0.51 EPS for the current year.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in AK Steel Holding Corporation by 52,055.2% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 39,293,178 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $282,518,000 after buying an additional 39,217,839 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in AK Steel Holding Corporation by 6.6% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 37,074,630 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $266,566,000 after buying an additional 2,308,220 shares in the last quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC increased its stake in AK Steel Holding Corporation by 25.6% in the first quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 16,463,348 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $118,371,000 after buying an additional 3,357,464 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp increased its stake in AK Steel Holding Corporation by 20.3% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 12,737,201 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $91,579,000 after buying an additional 2,151,457 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Teachers Advisors LLC increased its stake in AK Steel Holding Corporation by 63.5% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 8,114,044 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $58,340,000 after buying an additional 3,150,282 shares in the last quarter. 77.75% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About AK Steel Holding Corporation

AK Steel Holding Corporation is a producer of flat-rolled carbon, stainless and electrical steels, and tubular products through its subsidiary, AK Steel Corporation (AK Steel). The Company also operates blast furnaces and electric arc furnaces. As of December 31, 2016, its operations included eight steelmaking and finishing plants, two coke plants and two tube manufacturing plants across states, including Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, and a tube manufacturing plant in Mexico.

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