Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) Sees Significant Growth in Short Interest

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MSGet Rating) saw a significant growth in short interest in April. As of April 30th, there was short interest totalling 20,140,000 shares, a growth of 27.5% from the April 15th total of 15,790,000 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 10,550,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 1.9 days. Approximately 1.5% of the shares of the stock are short sold.

In related news, Director Stephen J. Luczo bought 25,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 12th. The stock was bought at an average cost of $79.30 per share, for a total transaction of $1,982,500.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 179,449 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $14,230,305.70. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. 0.26% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in MS. Continuum Advisory LLC increased its position in shares of Morgan Stanley by 24.3% during the first quarter. Continuum Advisory LLC now owns 3,411 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $275,000 after acquiring an additional 666 shares in the last quarter. Avalon Investment & Advisory increased its position in shares of Morgan Stanley by 10.9% during the first quarter. Avalon Investment & Advisory now owns 682,756 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $59,673,000 after acquiring an additional 67,292 shares in the last quarter. Global Wealth Management Investment Advisory Inc. increased its position in shares of Morgan Stanley by 101,510.0% during the first quarter. Global Wealth Management Investment Advisory Inc. now owns 20,322 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,776,000 after acquiring an additional 20,302 shares in the last quarter. Linscomb & Williams Inc. increased its position in shares of Morgan Stanley by 483.3% during the first quarter. Linscomb & Williams Inc. now owns 16,777 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,466,000 after acquiring an additional 13,901 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Advisors Asset Management Inc. increased its position in shares of Morgan Stanley by 14.1% during the first quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. now owns 144,632 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $12,641,000 after acquiring an additional 17,821 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 85.02% of the company’s stock.

Shares of MS stock traded down $2.24 during trading hours on Wednesday, hitting $80.69. 5,947,732 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 10,871,326. The stock’s fifty day simple moving average is $86.22 and its two-hundred day simple moving average is $94.45. Morgan Stanley has a 12-month low of $76.75 and a 12-month high of $109.73. The stock has a market cap of $141.15 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.39, a PEG ratio of 1.36 and a beta of 1.41. The company has a quick ratio of 0.79, a current ratio of 0.79 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.39.

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MSGet Rating) last released its earnings results on Thursday, April 14th. The financial services provider reported $2.06 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.69 by $0.37. Morgan Stanley had a net margin of 24.21% and a return on equity of 15.15%. The firm had revenue of $14.80 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $14.16 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $2.22 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was down 5.8% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts forecast that Morgan Stanley will post 7.38 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 13th. Stockholders of record on Friday, April 29th were issued a dividend of $0.70 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, April 28th. This represents a $2.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.47%. Morgan Stanley’s payout ratio is 35.62%.

MS has been the subject of several recent analyst reports. Odeon Capital Group downgraded shares of Morgan Stanley from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, January 28th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Morgan Stanley from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $91.00 price objective for the company. in a research note on Wednesday, March 16th. BMO Capital Markets upped their price objective on shares of Morgan Stanley from $110.00 to $113.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Monday, April 18th. Wells Fargo & Company lowered their price objective on shares of Morgan Stanley from $104.00 to $94.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research note on Monday, April 4th. Finally, The Goldman Sachs Group set a $105.00 price objective on shares of Morgan Stanley in a research note on Wednesday, April 20th. Twelve investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have given a buy rating to the company. According to MarketBeat, the stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $107.06.

Morgan Stanley Company Profile (Get Rating)

Morgan Stanley, a financial holding company, provides various financial products and services to corporations, governments, financial institutions, and individuals in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. It operates through Institutional Securities, Wealth Management, and Investment Management segments.

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