AvalonBay Communities, Inc. (AVB) Upgraded to Hold by Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of AvalonBay Communities, Inc. (NYSE:AVB) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of AvalonBay underperformed its industry, year to date. However, the stock has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for third-quarter 2017 and current-year funds from operations (FFO) per share remaining unchanged in a week’s time. Amid favorable demographics and decent demand along its markets, AvalonBay is well poised to grow given its solid portfolio of high quality assets in premium locations. The company also has a healthy balance sheet. However, there is presence of elevated supply in a number of its markets. Hence, growth in its stabilized portfolio is likely to remain restricted in the upcoming period. Further, delay in construction activities in the development portfolio is anticipated to affect the company’s lease-up NOI in the near term. Rate hike add to its woes.”

AVB has been the topic of several other reports. Evercore ISI upgraded AvalonBay Communities from an in-line rating to an outperform rating and set a $194.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Monday, September 25th. Stifel Nicolaus reiterated a buy rating and issued a $209.00 price objective on shares of AvalonBay Communities in a report on Wednesday, October 4th. Barclays PLC lifted their price objective on AvalonBay Communities from $188.00 to $189.00 and gave the stock an equal weight rating in a report on Tuesday, July 18th. BidaskClub upgraded AvalonBay Communities from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Thursday, August 3rd. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC restated a hold rating and set a $196.00 target price on shares of AvalonBay Communities in a report on Tuesday, July 4th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $196.00.

AvalonBay Communities (NYSE AVB) traded down 0.37% during midday trading on Monday, hitting $181.22. The company had a trading volume of 533,492 shares. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $180.63 and a 200 day moving average price of $188.10. The firm has a market capitalization of $24.96 billion, a P/E ratio of 24.96 and a beta of 0.36. AvalonBay Communities has a 1-year low of $158.32 and a 1-year high of $199.52.

AvalonBay Communities (NYSE:AVB) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, October 30th. The real estate investment trust reported $1.72 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.17 by ($0.45). AvalonBay Communities had a return on equity of 9.88% and a net margin of 47.90%. The firm had revenue of $550.50 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $539.69 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $2.11 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 6.6% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts forecast that AvalonBay Communities will post $5.27 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 16th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 29th were given a $1.42 dividend. This represents a $5.68 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.12%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, September 28th. AvalonBay Communities’s payout ratio is 78.13%.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Ffcm LLC grew its stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities by 6.6% in the second quarter. Ffcm LLC now owns 10,736 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $2,064,000 after acquiring an additional 667 shares in the last quarter. AXA grew its stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities by 7.7% in the second quarter. AXA now owns 111,799 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $21,485,000 after acquiring an additional 7,981 shares in the last quarter. IBM Retirement Fund grew its stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities by 120.1% in the second quarter. IBM Retirement Fund now owns 3,374 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $724,000 after acquiring an additional 1,841 shares in the last quarter. Swiss National Bank grew its stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities by 2.0% in the second quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 849,580 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $163,264,000 after acquiring an additional 16,400 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Koch Industries Inc. acquired a new position in shares of AvalonBay Communities in the second quarter worth $365,000. 97.42% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

AvalonBay Communities Company Profile

AvalonBay Communities, Inc is a real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company is focused on the development, redevelopment, acquisition, ownership and operation of multifamily communities primarily in New England, the New York/New Jersey metro area, the Mid-Atlantic, the Pacific Northwest, and Northern and Southern California.

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