The Vanguard Group, Inc. recently announced the acquisition of new stake in Equity Residential (NYSE:EQR). The institutional investor has increased its shareholding in the Real Estate company by 0.54% to 55.86 million shares with purchase of 0.3 million shares. This fresh investment now brings its stake to 14.78% valued currently at $3.49 billion. In addition, Norges Bank Investment Management raised its holdings by 0.73 million to 30.89 million shares. And BlackRock Fund Advisors has lifted its position by 6.30% or 1.52 million shares – to 25.69 million shares.
With over 2.19 million Equity Residential (EQR) shares trading Monday and a closing price of $59.24 on the day, the dollar volume was approximately $129.58 million. The shares have shown a negative half year performance of -23.28% and its price on 03/13/23 gained nearly 1.32%. Currently, there are 377.71M common shares owned by the public and among those 371.23M shares have been available to trade.
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An analysis of what Wall Street brokers have to say about the expected price targets for this stock gives us this picture: 24 analysts who have offered their price forecasts for EQR have a consensus price objective of $68.40. The analysts have set the share’s price value over the next 12 months at a high of $73.00 and a low of $58.00. The average price target is 14.64% above its recent price level and a downside to the estimated low will see the stock lose -2.14% over that period. But an upside of 18.85% will see the stock hit the forecast high price target while median target price for the stock is $70.00.
Insiders at the company have transacted a total of 41 times over the past 12 months, according to data filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). 29 of these insider trades were purchases, accounting for 282,653 shares. Insider sales of the common stock occurred on 12 occasions, with total insider shares sold totaling 110,150 shares.
The top 3 mutual fund holders in Equity Residential are Government Pension Fund – Global, Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund, and Stichting Pensioenfonds ABP. Government Pension Fund – Global owns 30.8 million shares of the company’s stock, all valued at over $1.93 billion. The company bought an additional 0.73 million shares recently to bring their total holdings to about 8.15% of the shares outstanding. Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund bought 995.0 shares to see its total holdings expand to 15.34 million shares valued at over $959.32 million and representing 4.06% of the shares outstanding. Stichting Pensioenfonds ABP bought 0.54 million shares to bring its total holdings to over 12.44 million shares at a value of $777.75 million. Stichting Pensioenfonds ABP now owns shares totaling to 3.29% of the shares outstanding.
Shares of Equity Residential (NYSE: EQR) opened at $58.23, down -$0.24 from a prior closing price of $58.47. However, the script later moved the day high at 60.15, up 1.32%. The company’s stock has a 5-day price change of -5.52% and -5.53% over the past three months. EQR shares are trading 0.41% year to date (YTD), with the 12-month market performance down to -32.30% lower. It has a 12-month low price of $57.38 and touched a high of $94.32 over the same period. EQR has an average intraday trading volume of 2.54 million shares. The stock is trading above its simple moving averages at the SMA20, SMA50, and SMA200, as the current price level is off by -6.57%, -4.98%, and -12.37% respectively.
Institutional ownership of Equity Residential (NYSE: EQR) shares accounts for 93.10% of the company’s 377.71M shares outstanding. Mutual fund holders own 4.23%, while other institutional holders and individual stakeholders account for 57.76% and 35.97% respectively.
It has a market capitalization of $23.35B and a beta (3y monthly) value of 0.84. The stock’s trailing 12-month PE ratio is 28.65, while the earnings-per-share (ttm) stands at $2.07. The company has a PEG of 1.85 and the debt-to-equity ratio at 0.67. Price movements for the stock have been influenced by the stock’s volatility, which stands at 3.40% over the week and 2.42% over the month.
Analysts forecast that Equity Residential (EQR) will achieve an EPS of $0.38 for the current quarter, $0.33 for the next quarter and $1.57 for 2023. The lowest estimate earnings-per-share for the quarter is $0.36 while analysts give the company a high EPS estimate of $0.41. Comparatively, EPS for the current quarter was $1.4 a year ago. Earnings per share for the fiscal year are expected to decrease by -42.00%, and 11.00% over the next financial year. EPS should grow at an annualized rate of 15.51% over the next five years, compared to 4.80% over the past 5-year period.
If you are looking to buy this stock, then you may note that the average analyst recommendation by 24 brokerage firm advisors rate Equity Residential (EQR) as a “Moderate Buy” at a consensus score of 2.70. Specifically, 8 Wall Street analysts polled rate the stock as a buy, while 14 of the 24 advise that investors “hold,” and 2 rated it as a “Sell.”
Looking at the support for the EQR, a number of firms have released research notes about the stock. Truist stated their Buy rating for the stock in a research note on January 17, 2023, with the firm’s price target at $68. Credit Suisse was of a view on January 09, 2023 that the stock is Neutral, while BMO Capital Markets gave the stock Underperform rating on December 16, 2022, issuing a price target of $70- $61. Argus on their part issued Buy rating on November 17, 2022.
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