Short Interest in Pfizer Inc. (PFE) Rises By 9.2%

Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) was the target of a large growth in short interest during the month of January. As of January 31st, there was short interest totalling 56,963,145 shares, a growth of 9.2% from the January 12th total of 52,176,014 shares. Approximately 1.0% of the shares of the company are short sold. Based on an average daily volume of 28,232,327 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.0 days.

In related news, insider Alexander R. Mackenzie sold 6,750 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $37.00, for a total transaction of $249,750.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 103,458 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,827,946. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Rady A. Johnson sold 8,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $37.07, for a total value of $296,560.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 46,963 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,740,918.41. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.06% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Shine Investment Advisory Services Inc. bought a new stake in Pfizer during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $102,000. Mckinley Capital Management LLC Delaware bought a new stake in Pfizer during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $103,000. First Dallas Securities Inc. bought a new stake in Pfizer during the 4th quarter worth approximately $118,000. Herndon Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in Pfizer during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $120,000. Finally, Americafirst Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in Pfizer during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $127,000. Institutional investors own 70.06% of the company’s stock.

PFE has been the subject of several recent research reports. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $39.00 price target (up previously from $37.00) on shares of Pfizer in a report on Thursday, October 19th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $39.00 price target on Pfizer and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 1st. UBS Group set a $38.00 price target on Pfizer and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 1st. Vetr raised Pfizer from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $38.82 price target for the company in a report on Thursday, November 23rd. Finally, Deutsche Bank set a $38.00 price target on Pfizer and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 6th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company. Pfizer has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $39.45.

Shares of Pfizer (PFE) opened at $34.66 on Tuesday. Pfizer has a 12 month low of $31.67 and a 12 month high of $39.43. The firm has a market capitalization of $206,600.00, a P/E ratio of 9.85, a PEG ratio of 1.93 and a beta of 0.94. The company has a quick ratio of 1.15, a current ratio of 1.43 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.56.

Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, January 30th. The biopharmaceutical company reported $0.62 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.56 by $0.06. Pfizer had a return on equity of 26.86% and a net margin of 40.55%. The company had revenue of $13.70 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $13.67 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.47 EPS. The company’s revenue was up .6% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts predict that Pfizer will post 2.95 earnings per share for the current year.

Pfizer announced that its board has authorized a stock repurchase plan on Monday, December 18th that authorizes the company to repurchase $10.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the biopharmaceutical company to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 1st. Stockholders of record on Friday, February 2nd will be paid a $0.34 dividend. This is a positive change from Pfizer’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.32. This represents a $1.36 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.92%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, February 1st. Pfizer’s dividend payout ratio is currently 38.64%.

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About Pfizer

Pfizer Inc (Pfizer) is a research-based global biopharmaceutical company. The Company is engaged in the discovery, development and manufacture of healthcare products. Its global portfolio includes medicines and vaccines, as well as consumer healthcare products. The Company manages its commercial operations through two business segments: Pfizer Innovative Health (IH) and Pfizer Essential Health (EH).

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