Green Plains Sees Unusually Large Options Volume (GPRE)

Green Plains Inc (NASDAQ:GPRE) was the target of some unusual options trading activity on Tuesday. Stock traders bought 540 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 718% compared to the typical volume of 66 put options.

In other Green Plains news, Director Wayne Hoovestol acquired 102,653 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, November 17th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $16.37 per share, for a total transaction of $1,680,429.61. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 218,277 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,573,194.49. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, insider Todd A. Becker acquired 9,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, December 22nd. The shares were acquired at an average price of $16.74 per share, with a total value of $150,660.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 716,588 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $11,995,683.12. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have acquired 127,136 shares of company stock valued at $2,087,178 in the last quarter. 6.40% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio lifted its holdings in shares of Green Plains by 1.4% in the 2nd quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 7,612 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $156,000 after acquiring an additional 104 shares during the last quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company lifted its holdings in shares of Green Plains by 5.4% in the 2nd quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 29,433 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $605,000 after acquiring an additional 1,513 shares during the last quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Green Plains by 28.6% in the 2nd quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 10,599 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $218,000 after acquiring an additional 2,360 shares during the last quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System lifted its holdings in shares of Green Plains by 1.5% in the 3rd quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 222,028 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $4,474,000 after acquiring an additional 3,328 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Swiss National Bank lifted its holdings in shares of Green Plains by 6.8% in the 4th quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 64,100 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $1,080,000 after acquiring an additional 4,100 shares during the last quarter.

Green Plains (NASDAQ GPRE) traded up $0.70 during trading on Wednesday, hitting $19.20. 840,619 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 794,026. The company has a market cap of $755.33, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.61, a PEG ratio of 3.47 and a beta of 1.55. The company has a quick ratio of 0.56, a current ratio of 1.36 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72. Green Plains has a 12-month low of $15.60 and a 12-month high of $26.05.

Green Plains (NASDAQ:GPRE) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, February 7th. The specialty chemicals company reported ($0.16) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.17) by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $920.98 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $953.30 million. Green Plains had a net margin of 1.70% and a negative return on equity of 3.33%. The business’s revenue was down 1.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $0.47 EPS. equities analysts forecast that Green Plains will post 0.5 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, February 23rd will be issued a $0.12 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, February 22nd. This represents a $0.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.50%. Green Plains’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 39.02%.

Several research firms have commented on GPRE. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Green Plains from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday. BidaskClub lowered shares of Green Plains from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 24th. Roth Capital set a $25.00 price objective on shares of Green Plains and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 24th. BMO Capital Markets reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $25.00 price objective (down previously from $30.00) on shares of Green Plains in a research report on Monday, November 6th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies upgraded shares of Green Plains from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating in a research report on Friday, November 3rd. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and six have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Green Plains currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $26.67.

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Green Plains Company Profile

Green Plains Inc is an ethanol producer. The Company owns and operates assets throughout the ethanol value chain, including upstream, with grain handling and storage through its ethanol production facilities, and downstream, with marketing and distribution services. It operates through four segments: Ethanol Production, Agribusiness and Energy Services, Food and Food Ingredients, and Partnership.

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