Essex Property Trust, Inc. (ESS) Stock Rating Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Essex Property Trust, Inc. (NYSE:ESS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday. The brokerage presently has a $289.00 price target on the real estate investment trust’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s target price points to a potential upside of 12.19% from the company’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Essex Property outperformed the industry it belongs to year to date. Moreover, the stock has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year funds from operations (FFO) per share being revised upward in two months’ time. Notably, the company delivered a better-than-expected performance for second-quarter 2017. Results reflect solid growth in revenues. With a strong property base and solid balance sheet, Essex is likely to leverage on favorable demographic trends in its markets. The company’s substantial exposure to the West Coast market, which is home to several innovation and technology companies, offers ample scope to boost its top line over the long term. Moreover, it has a 23-year history of increasing cash dividend. However, in the upcoming period, large concession amid elevated supply is likely to result in periodic disruption in certain submarkets. Also, rate hike adds to its woes.”

ESS has been the topic of several other research reports. Royal Bank Of Canada restated a “buy” rating and set a $267.00 price target on shares of Essex Property Trust in a research note on Sunday, July 16th. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “neutral” rating on shares of Essex Property Trust in a research note on Monday, July 17th. Mizuho lowered shares of Essex Property Trust from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $283.00 target price on the stock. in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Cantor Fitzgerald reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $280.00 target price on shares of Essex Property Trust in a research note on Wednesday, September 13th. Finally, Evercore ISI lowered shares of Essex Property Trust from an “in-line” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $261.00 target price on the stock. in a research note on Monday, June 12th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating, eight have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $268.07.

Shares of Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS) traded up 0.15% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, reaching $257.98. 164,375 shares of the company were exchanged. The company has a market capitalization of $17.02 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 33.17 and a beta of 0.53. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $260.76 and its 200-day moving average is $255.26. Essex Property Trust has a 12 month low of $200.01 and a 12 month high of $270.04.

Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The real estate investment trust reported $2.97 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.92 by $0.05. Essex Property Trust had a net margin of 38.33% and a return on equity of 8.03%. The company had revenue of $339.06 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $336.17 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $2.74 EPS. On average, equities analysts forecast that Essex Property Trust will post $5.89 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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In related news, insider John D. Eudy sold 166 shares of Essex Property Trust stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, July 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $253.79, for a total transaction of $42,129.14. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 8,596 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,181,578.84. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider John F. Burkart sold 333 shares of Essex Property Trust stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $261.84, for a total transaction of $87,192.72. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 4,818 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,261,545.12. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 10,981 shares of company stock valued at $2,914,681 over the last three months. 3.30% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in ESS. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC lifted its holdings in Essex Property Trust by 145.3% during the 2nd quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 471 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $121,000 after purchasing an additional 279 shares during the last quarter. Sun Life Financial INC lifted its holdings in Essex Property Trust by 5,900.0% during the 2nd quarter. Sun Life Financial INC now owns 480 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $123,000 after purchasing an additional 472 shares during the last quarter. FNY Partners Fund LP bought a new position in Essex Property Trust during the 1st quarter valued at about $165,000. Perigon Wealth Management LLC lifted its holdings in Essex Property Trust by 835.2% during the 1st quarter. Perigon Wealth Management LLC now owns 823 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $192,000 after purchasing an additional 735 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Wetherby Asset Management Inc. bought a new position in Essex Property Trust during the 2nd quarter valued at about $203,000. 99.46% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Essex Property Trust

Essex Property Trust, Inc is a self-administered and self-managed real estate investment trust. The Company is engaged primarily in the ownership, operation, management, acquisition, development and redevelopment of predominantly apartment communities, located along the West Coast. Its segments include Southern California, Northern California, Seattle Metro and Other real estate assets.

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