Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (NYSE:CLF) was the target of unusually large options trading on Wednesday. Traders bought 18,101 call options on the company. This represents an increase of approximately 118% compared to the typical volume of 8,319 call options.

In other Cliffs Natural Resources news, Chairman Lourenco Goncalves purchased 100,000 shares of Cliffs Natural Resources stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 10th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $7.19 per share, for a total transaction of $719,000.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the chairman now owns 3,486,970 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $25,071,314.30. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Company insiders own 0.46% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its position in shares of Cliffs Natural Resources by 24.7% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 31,963,836 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $221,190,000 after acquiring an additional 6,321,205 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. grew its position in shares of Cliffs Natural Resources by 1.6% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 18,860,269 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $130,512,000 after acquiring an additional 306,081 shares during the period. State Street Corp grew its position in shares of Cliffs Natural Resources by 6.5% during the 2nd quarter. State Street Corp now owns 10,720,937 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $74,189,000 after acquiring an additional 653,261 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its position in shares of Cliffs Natural Resources by 20.1% during the 2nd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 6,297,769 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $43,581,000 after acquiring an additional 1,056,056 shares during the period. Finally, Northern Trust Corp grew its position in shares of Cliffs Natural Resources by 16.8% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 4,977,719 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $34,446,000 after acquiring an additional 717,021 shares during the period. 58.30% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

A number of equities analysts recently commented on CLF shares. BidaskClub upgraded Cliffs Natural Resources from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, July 6th. Axiom Securities reiterated a “sell” rating on shares of Cliffs Natural Resources in a report on Monday, July 31st. Jefferies Group LLC started coverage on Cliffs Natural Resources in a report on Friday, July 7th. They set a “buy” rating and a $9.00 price target for the company. TheStreet upgraded Cliffs Natural Resources from a “d+” rating to a “c” rating in a report on Monday, July 31st. Finally, ValuEngine cut Cliffs Natural Resources from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 2nd. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $8.31.

Shares of Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE CLF) opened at 7.96 on Friday. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $7.67 and its 200-day moving average price is $7.52. Cliffs Natural Resources has a one year low of $4.91 and a one year high of $12.37. The company has a market cap of $2.36 billion, a PE ratio of 36.51 and a beta of 1.70.

Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE:CLF) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The mining company reported $0.26 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.18 by $0.08. Cliffs Natural Resources had a net margin of 2.44% and a negative return on equity of 13.83%. The firm had revenue of $569.30 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $485.93 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.07 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 14.7% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts expect that Cliffs Natural Resources will post $0.97 EPS for the current year.

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Cliffs Natural Resources Company Profile

Cleveland-Cliffs Inc, formerly Cliffs Natural Resources Inc, is a mining and natural resources company. The Company is a supplier of iron ore pellets to the North American steel industry from its mines and pellet plants located in Michigan and Minnesota. The Company’s segments include U.S. Iron Ore and Asia Pacific Iron Ore.

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