Hersha Hospitality Trust (NYSE:HT) announced that its board has initiated a stock repurchase program, which allows the company to buyback $100.00 million in shares on Wednesday, January 3rd, EventVestor reports. This buyback authorization allows the real estate investment trust to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are typically an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

Shares of Hersha Hospitality Trust (HT) traded up $0.18 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $17.69. 983,000 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 720,450. The stock has a market capitalization of $728.59, a P/E ratio of 8.23, a PEG ratio of 2.02 and a beta of 1.35. The company has a quick ratio of 0.67, a current ratio of 0.67 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.10. Hersha Hospitality Trust has a fifty-two week low of $17.15 and a fifty-two week high of $21.67.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 16th. Stockholders of record on Friday, January 5th will be paid a $0.28 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, January 4th. This represents a $1.12 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 6.33%. Hersha Hospitality Trust’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 52.09%.

HT has been the subject of several research reports. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $19.00 price objective on shares of Hersha Hospitality Trust in a research note on Thursday, September 7th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Hersha Hospitality Trust from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 19th. DA Davidson initiated coverage on shares of Hersha Hospitality Trust in a research note on Friday, September 29th. They set a “buy” rating and a $21.00 price objective for the company. B. Riley restated a “buy” rating on shares of Hersha Hospitality Trust in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. Finally, Robert W. Baird restated a “buy” rating and issued a $20.00 target price on shares of Hersha Hospitality Trust in a research note on Friday, September 8th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $19.40.

In related news, COO Neil H. Shah purchased 2,823 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, October 26th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $17.71 per share, with a total value of $49,995.33. Following the completion of the acquisition, the chief operating officer now directly owns 305,033 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,402,134.43. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Neil H. Shah purchased 7,044 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 1st. The stock was bought at an average cost of $17.44 per share, for a total transaction of $122,847.36. Following the completion of the acquisition, the insider now directly owns 310,692 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,418,468.48. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders bought 19,815 shares of company stock valued at $346,990 over the last 90 days. Insiders own 8.10% of the company’s stock.

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Hersha Hospitality Trust Company Profile

Hersha Hospitality Trust is a self-advised real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company invests primarily in institutional grade hotels in urban gateway markets, including New York, Washington, District of Columbia, Boston, Philadelphia, South Florida and select markets on the West Coast. As of July 20, 2017, the Company’s hotels included 51 hotels totaling 7,804 rooms located in New York, Washington, DC, Boston, Philadelphia, South Florida and select markets on the West Coast.

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