Two Sigma Advisers LP lessened its holdings in shares of Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT) by 37.1% in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 1,493,285 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock after selling 881,718 shares during the quarter. Two Sigma Advisers LP owned approximately 0.14% of Applied Materials worth $76,337,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.
Other institutional investors have also made changes to their positions in the company. Financial Gravity Companies Inc. bought a new position in Applied Materials in the fourth quarter worth $110,000. Risk Paradigm Group LLC bought a new position in Applied Materials in the fourth quarter worth $110,000. Cerebellum GP LLC bought a new position in Applied Materials in the fourth quarter worth $122,000. Zions Bancorporation raised its holdings in Applied Materials by 349.1% in the third quarter. Zions Bancorporation now owns 2,636 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $137,000 after purchasing an additional 2,049 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Mckinley Capital Management LLC Delaware bought a new position in Applied Materials in the fourth quarter worth $169,000. Institutional investors own 79.30% of the company’s stock.
Shares of Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT) opened at $59.69 on Wednesday. The company has a current ratio of 2.96, a quick ratio of 2.25 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.62. Applied Materials, Inc. has a 12-month low of $37.41 and a 12-month high of $62.40. The company has a market capitalization of $64,060.39, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.52, a P/E/G ratio of 1.16 and a beta of 1.58.
Applied Materials announced that its board has approved a stock repurchase plan on Wednesday, February 14th that allows the company to buyback $6.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the manufacturing equipment provider to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 14th. Investors of record on Thursday, May 24th will be given a dividend of $0.20 per share. 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 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.34%. Applied Materials’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 15.09%.
In related news, VP Ali Salehpour sold 125,125 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, December 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.47, for a total transaction of $6,440,183.75. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP Omkaram Nalamasu sold 53,466 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, January 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.00, for a total value of $2,833,698.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 322,716 shares of company stock worth $16,850,796 over the last ninety days. 0.35% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
A number of equities analysts have issued reports on AMAT shares. Wells Fargo & Co started coverage on Applied Materials in a report on Tuesday, December 5th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $65.00 price objective for the company. UBS Group upgraded Applied Materials from a “neutral” rating to a “positive” rating in a report on Tuesday, January 16th. Vetr downgraded Applied Materials from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $63.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Wednesday, January 17th. BidaskClub upgraded Applied Materials from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, March 1st. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Applied Materials from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $59.00 price objective for the company in a report on Friday, December 15th. Twenty-six research analysts have rated the stock with a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Applied Materials presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $64.10.
About Applied Materials
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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