Short Interest in AbbVie Inc (NYSE:ABBV) Grows By 44.1%

AbbVie Inc (NYSE:ABBV) saw a large increase in short interest in the month of June. As of June 30th, there was short interest totalling 28,212,900 shares, an increase of 44.1% from the May 30th total of 19,582,900 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 8,370,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 3.4 days. Currently, 1.9% of the shares of the stock are sold short.

ABBV opened at $70.28 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $105.32 billion, a PE ratio of 8.88, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.46 and a beta of 0.98. AbbVie has a 1 year low of $65.06 and a 1 year high of $100.23. The company’s fifty day moving average price is $75.86.

AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 25th. The company reported $2.14 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.06 by $0.08. AbbVie had a negative return on equity of 221.09% and a net margin of 16.42%. The firm had revenue of $7.83 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $7.81 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.87 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 1.3% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts anticipate that AbbVie will post 8.78 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, August 15th. Shareholders of record on Monday, July 15th will be issued a dividend of $1.07 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, July 12th. This represents a $4.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 6.09%. AbbVie’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 54.11%.

In related news, Director Roxanne S. Austin acquired 11,500 shares of AbbVie stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 26th. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $67.50 per share, with a total value of $776,250.00. Following the purchase, the director now directly owns 52,114 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,517,695. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, EVP William J. Chase acquired 30,400 shares of AbbVie stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 26th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $67.30 per share, with a total value of $2,045,920.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the executive vice president now owns 169,552 shares in the company, valued at $11,410,849.60. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 0.08% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of ABBV. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund increased its stake in shares of AbbVie by 4,385.1% in the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 15,195,586 shares of the company’s stock worth $165,000 after purchasing an additional 14,856,786 shares during the period. Norges Bank bought a new position in shares of AbbVie in the fourth quarter worth about $1,300,469,000. FMR LLC increased its stake in shares of AbbVie by 56.5% in the first quarter. FMR LLC now owns 13,200,141 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,063,799,000 after purchasing an additional 4,765,946 shares during the period. Vaughan Nelson Investment Management L.P. bought a new position in shares of AbbVie in the fourth quarter worth about $97,947,000. Finally, Bessemer Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of AbbVie by 3,115.3% in the fourth quarter. Bessemer Group Inc. now owns 947,643 shares of the company’s stock worth $87,362,000 after purchasing an additional 918,170 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 68.27% of the company’s stock.

Several research firms have recently weighed in on ABBV. Leerink Swann raised AbbVie to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 2nd. Goldman Sachs Group set a $27.00 price objective on Melco Resorts & Entertainment and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 28th. BMO Capital Markets raised AbbVie from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and raised their target price for the stock from $71.00 to $79.00 in a research report on Sunday, April 28th. ValuEngine cut Yirendai from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 26th. Finally, Svb Leerink raised AbbVie from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $88.00 target price for the company in a research report on Wednesday, June 26th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $95.11.

AbbVie Company Profile

AbbVie Inc discovers, develops, manufactures, and sells pharmaceutical products in the United States, Japan, Germany, Canada, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Brazil, and internationally. The company offers HUMIRA, a therapy administered as an injection for autoimmune and intestinal Behçet's diseases; IMBRUVICA to treat adult patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL), mantle cell lymphoma, waldenström's macroglobulinemia, marginal zone lymphoma, and chronic graft versus host disease; VENCLEXTA, a BCL-2 inhibitor used to treat adults with CLL or SLL; VIEKIRA PAK, an interferon-free therapy to treat adults with genotype 1 chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV); TECHNIVIE to treat adults with genotype 4 HCV infection; and MAVYRET to treat patients with chronic HCV genotype 1-6 infection.

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