Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS) was the target of a large drop in short interest in the month of August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 19,431,834 shares, a drop of 7.9% from the August 15th total of 21,087,866 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 7,876,585 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.5 days. Approximately 3.0% of the shares of the company are short sold.

Staples (NASDAQ SPLS) opened at 10.25 on Friday. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $10.20 and its 200 day moving average is $9.55. Staples has a 1-year low of $7.24 and a 1-year high of $10.26. The firm’s market cap is $6.73 billion.

Staples (NASDAQ:SPLS) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 24th. The specialty retailer reported $0.12 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.12. Staples had a positive return on equity of 15.09% and a negative net margin of 8.53%. The business had revenue of $3.91 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.87 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.12 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.1% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts forecast that Staples will post $0.88 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A number of research firms recently weighed in on SPLS. Loop Capital reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $5.00 price objective on shares of Staples in a report on Friday, May 19th. BidaskClub raised shares of Staples from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 23rd. Telsey Advisory Group increased their price objective on shares of Staples from $9.00 to $10.25 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a report on Thursday, June 29th. Deutsche Bank AG set a $8.00 price objective on shares of Staples and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, June 22nd. Finally, Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Staples in a report on Tuesday, June 20th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company. Staples has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $9.04.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Ballentine Partners LLC raised its holdings in shares of Staples by 0.5% in the second quarter. Ballentine Partners LLC now owns 10,304 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $104,000 after buying an additional 50 shares during the last quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Staples by 0.4% in the second quarter. Raymond James Financial Services Advisors Inc. now owns 19,374 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $195,000 after buying an additional 77 shares during the last quarter. Concert Wealth Management Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Staples by 0.7% in the first quarter. Concert Wealth Management Inc. now owns 12,065 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $109,000 after buying an additional 82 shares during the last quarter. Cleararc Capital Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Staples by 0.5% in the first quarter. Cleararc Capital Inc. now owns 15,885 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $139,000 after buying an additional 85 shares during the last quarter. Finally, CIBC Asset Management Inc raised its holdings in shares of Staples by 0.3% in the second quarter. CIBC Asset Management Inc now owns 73,643 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $742,000 after buying an additional 203 shares during the last quarter. 85.56% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Staples

Staples, Inc (Staples) is a provider of products and services that serve the needs of business customers and consumers. The Company offers a range of print and marketing and technology services. The Company’s segments include North American Delivery, North American Retail and Other. The North American Delivery segment consists of the United States and Canadian businesses, including Staples Business Advantage, staples.com, staples.ca, and quill.com, that sell and deliver products and services primarily to businesses.

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