Short Interest in Morningstar, Inc. (NASDAQ:MORN) Grows By 51.1%

Morningstar, Inc. (NASDAQ:MORNGet Rating) was the target of a large increase in short interest during the month of May. As of May 15th, there was short interest totalling 466,300 shares, an increase of 51.1% from the April 30th total of 308,700 shares. Approximately 1.8% of the shares of the company are sold short. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 158,500 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.9 days.

Morningstar stock traded up $8.41 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $262.84. The stock had a trading volume of 73,173 shares, compared to its average volume of 163,637. The firm’s fifty day moving average is $262.14 and its two-hundred day moving average is $287.10. The company has a market capitalization of $11.23 billion, a PE ratio of 61.84 and a beta of 1.16. Morningstar has a 52-week low of $227.53 and a 52-week high of $350.21. The company has a current ratio of 1.25, a quick ratio of 1.25 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.37.

Morningstar (NASDAQ:MORNGet Rating) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, April 27th. The business services provider reported $1.41 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter. The firm had revenue of $457.00 million during the quarter. Morningstar had a net margin of 10.46% and a return on equity of 19.08%.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, July 29th. Investors of record on Friday, July 1st will be given a dividend of $0.36 per share. This represents a $1.44 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.55%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, June 30th. Morningstar’s dividend payout ratio is currently 33.88%.

In other news, CFO Jason Dubinsky sold 1,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $280.04, for a total transaction of $420,060.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Robin Diamonte sold 600 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $241.00, for a total transaction of $144,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 8,467 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,040,547. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 208,519 shares of company stock valued at $54,575,383. Company insiders own 45.70% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Select Equity Group L.P. boosted its stake in Morningstar by 16.5% in the 4th quarter. Select Equity Group L.P. now owns 4,850,288 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $1,658,750,000 after purchasing an additional 688,048 shares during the period. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA bought a new stake in Morningstar in the 4th quarter valued at $128,670,000. Norges Bank purchased a new stake in Morningstar in the 4th quarter worth $77,278,000. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its holdings in shares of Morningstar by 27.3% during the 1st quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 733,609 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $200,402,000 after purchasing an additional 157,262 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. grew its position in shares of Morningstar by 5.7% during the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 2,403,202 shares of the business services provider’s stock valued at $656,482,000 after purchasing an additional 129,956 shares in the last quarter. 54.01% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Separately, lowered Morningstar from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 13th.

About Morningstar (Get Rating)

Morningstar, Inc provides independent investment research services in North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia. The company offers web-based tools; investment data, fundamental equity and manager research, private capital markets research, credit and fund rating, and index, as well as environmental, social, and governance (ESG) rating services; and investment offerings, including managed investment products, publicly listed and private companies, fixed income securities, and real-time global market data for financial advisors, asset managers, retirement plan providers and sponsors, and individual and institutional investors.

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