California State Teachers Retirement System lessened its stake in Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT) by 2.8% during the 4th quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 1,771,579 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock after selling 50,790 shares during the period. California State Teachers Retirement System owned 0.17% of Applied Materials worth $90,563,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
A number of other hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of AMAT. Financial Gravity Companies Inc. purchased a new position in Applied Materials during the 4th quarter valued at about $110,000. Risk Paradigm Group LLC purchased a new position in Applied Materials during the 4th quarter valued at about $110,000. Cerebellum GP LLC purchased a new position in Applied Materials during the 4th quarter valued at about $122,000. Zions Bancorporation increased its position in Applied Materials by 349.1% during the 3rd quarter. Zions Bancorporation now owns 2,636 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock valued at $137,000 after purchasing an additional 2,049 shares during the period. Finally, Mckinley Capital Management LLC Delaware purchased a new position in Applied Materials during the 4th quarter valued at about $169,000. 79.30% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
A number of research analysts have commented on the stock. BidaskClub raised shares of Applied Materials from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 1st. Credit Suisse Group reissued an “outperform” rating and set a $75.00 target price (up previously from $74.00) on shares of Applied Materials in a research report on Monday, February 26th. Vetr downgraded shares of Applied Materials from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $62.52 target price on the stock. in a research report on Tuesday, February 20th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Applied Materials from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $60.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Monday, February 19th. Finally, Deutsche Bank raised their target price on shares of Applied Materials from $65.00 to $70.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, February 15th. Twenty-six analysts have rated the stock with a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $64.10.
Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, February 14th. The manufacturing equipment provider reported $1.06 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.98 by $0.08. The company had revenue of $4.20 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.10 billion. Applied Materials had a net margin of 18.53% and a return on equity of 45.17%. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.67 EPS. research analysts forecast that Applied Materials, Inc. will post 4.39 earnings per share for the current year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 14th. Investors of record on Thursday, May 24th will be paid a $0.20 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, May 23rd. This is a boost from Applied Materials’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.10. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.31%. Applied Materials’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 15.09%.
Applied Materials announced that its board has approved a share repurchase program on Wednesday, February 14th that authorizes the company to repurchase $6.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the manufacturing equipment provider to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are generally a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
In related news, Director Thomas J. Iannotti sold 15,000 shares of Applied Materials stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, March 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $61.47, for a total value of $922,050.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 76,967 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,731,161.49. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Stephen R. Forrest sold 4,000 shares of Applied Materials stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.67, for a total transaction of $214,680.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 322,716 shares of company stock valued at $16,850,796 over the last quarter. 0.35% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
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Applied Materials Company Profile
Applied Materials, Inc provides manufacturing equipment, services and software to the global semiconductor, display and related industries. The Company’s segments are Semiconductor Systems, which includes semiconductor capital equipment for etch, rapid thermal processing, deposition, chemical mechanical planarization, metrology and inspection, wafer packaging, and ion implantation; Applied Global Services, which provides integrated solutions to optimize equipment and fab performance and productivity; Display and Adjacent Markets, which includes products for manufacturing liquid crystal displays, organic light-emitting diodes, upgrades and roll-to-roll Web coating systems and other display technologies for televisions, personal computers, smart phones and other consumer-oriented devices, and Corporate and Other segment, which includes revenues from products, as well as costs of products sold for fabricating solar photovoltaic cells and modules, and certain operating expenses.
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