Piper Jaffray Companies (NYSE:PJC) has been given a consensus recommendation of “Sell” by the eight research firms that are currently covering the company, Marketbeat.com reports. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and two have assigned a hold rating to the company. The average 1 year price target among analysts that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $21.75.

Separately, BidaskClub raised shares of Piper Jaffray Companies from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, July 8th.

Shares of Piper Jaffray Companies (NYSE PJC) opened at 56.85 on Friday. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $56.82 and its 200-day moving average price is $60.76. The company has a market cap of $859.23 million, a PE ratio of 256.08 and a beta of 1.44. Piper Jaffray Companies has a 12-month low of $45.95 and a 12-month high of $81.85.

Piper Jaffray Companies (NYSE:PJC) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 27th. The financial services provider reported $1.40 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.11 by $0.29. The firm had revenue of $197.75 million for the quarter. Piper Jaffray Companies had a net margin of 0.40% and a return on equity of 9.63%. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Piper Jaffray Companies will post $5.39 earnings per share for the current year.

Piper Jaffray Companies declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback program on Thursday, August 10th that authorizes the company to buyback $150.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the financial services provider to repurchase up to 17.4% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are typically a sign that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 15th. Stockholders of record on Monday, August 28th were given a dividend of $0.3125 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, August 24th. This represents a $1.25 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.20%. Piper Jaffray Companies’s payout ratio is -1,249.88%.

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In other news, insider Thomas Gregory Smith sold 1,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, July 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.46, for a total transaction of $93,690.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 15,279 shares in the company, valued at $954,326.34. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Martin Bradley Winges sold 3,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.42, for a total transaction of $193,260.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 46,133 shares in the company, valued at $2,971,887.86. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 12,988 shares of company stock worth $827,163 over the last quarter. 5.36% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. SG Americas Securities LLC acquired a new position in shares of Piper Jaffray Companies during the first quarter worth approximately $123,000. Creative Planning lifted its position in shares of Piper Jaffray Companies by 9.2% during the second quarter. Creative Planning now owns 2,094 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $126,000 after purchasing an additional 177 shares in the last quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC lifted its position in shares of Piper Jaffray Companies by 301.7% during the first quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 2,097 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $134,000 after purchasing an additional 1,575 shares in the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue lifted its position in shares of Piper Jaffray Companies by 78.3% during the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 2,800 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $167,000 after purchasing an additional 1,230 shares in the last quarter. Finally, PNC Financial Services Group Inc. lifted its position in shares of Piper Jaffray Companies by 0.4% during the second quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 2,842 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $170,000 after purchasing an additional 10 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 66.31% of the company’s stock.

About Piper Jaffray Companies

Piper Jaffray Companies is an investment bank and asset management company. The Company’s segments include Capital Markets and Asset Management. The Capital Markets segment provides investment banking and institutional sales, trading and research services for various equity and fixed income products.

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