Short Interest in ENSCO PLC (NYSE:ESV) Grows By 9.7%

ENSCO PLC (NYSE:ESV) was the target of a large increase in short interest in July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 86,247,963 shares, an increase of 9.7% from the July 14th total of 78,634,439 shares. Approximately 28.6% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average trading volume of 19,840,039 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 4.3 days.

Shares of ENSCO PLC (ESV) opened at 4.61 on Monday. ENSCO PLC has a one year low of $4.32 and a one year high of $12.04. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $5.21 and a 200 day moving average price of $7.67. The stock has a market cap of $1.40 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.81 and a beta of 1.64.

ENSCO PLC (NYSE:ESV) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 27th. The offshore drilling services provider reported ($0.10) EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.12) by $0.02. The company had revenue of $457.50 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $453.48 million. ENSCO PLC had a return on equity of 0.77% and a net margin of 2.68%. ENSCO PLC’s revenue for the quarter was down 49.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $2.04 earnings per share. Equities research analysts expect that ENSCO PLC will post ($0.37) earnings per share for the current year.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in ENSCO PLC by 39.3% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 819,148 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $7,962,000 after buying an additional 231,190 shares during the period. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. boosted its stake in shares of ENSCO PLC by 10.2% in the fourth quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 581,271 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $5,650,000 after buying an additional 53,771 shares during the last quarter. Creative Planning boosted its stake in shares of ENSCO PLC by 4.8% in the first quarter. Creative Planning now owns 13,135 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $118,000 after buying an additional 601 shares during the last quarter. Bank of Montreal Can boosted its stake in shares of ENSCO PLC by 114.2% in the first quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 285,780 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $2,558,000 after buying an additional 152,389 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Fox Run Management L.L.C. boosted its stake in shares of ENSCO PLC by 14.0% in the first quarter. Fox Run Management L.L.C. now owns 20,300 shares of the offshore drilling services provider’s stock worth $182,000 after buying an additional 2,500 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 89.52% of the company’s stock.

Several equities analysts have weighed in on ESV shares. BMO Capital Markets raised their price objective on ENSCO PLC from $4.75 to $5.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 28th. ValuEngine cut ENSCO PLC from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 1st. Barclays PLC reaffirmed a “sell” rating and set a $8.00 target price on shares of ENSCO PLC in a research report on Thursday, April 27th. BidaskClub lowered ENSCO PLC from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report on Thursday, June 22nd. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies raised ENSCO PLC from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and decreased their target price for the company from $9.20 to $8.00 in a research report on Monday, June 19th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $9.64.

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About ENSCO PLC

Ensco plc is an offshore contract drilling company. The Company provides offshore contract drilling services to the international oil and gas industry. Its segments include Floaters, Jackups and Other. The Floaters segment includes its drillships and semisubmersible rigs, and provides contract drilling.

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