Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS) Reaches New 12-Month High at $317.31

Essex Property Trust Inc (NYSE:ESS) hit a new 52-week high during mid-day trading on Monday . The stock traded as high as $317.31 and last traded at $316.29, with a volume of 8889 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $314.72.

Several research analysts have weighed in on the company. Morgan Stanley increased their price objective on Essex Property Trust from $292.00 to $320.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Thursday, June 27th. BMO Capital Markets set a $310.00 target price on Essex Property Trust and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 24th. Citigroup upped their target price on Essex Property Trust from $280.00 to $300.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 30th. Barclays upped their target price on Essex Property Trust from $310.00 to $328.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 16th. Finally, Robert W. Baird lowered Essex Property Trust from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and upped their target price for the stock from $297.00 to $302.00 in a research note on Tuesday, June 18th. Eight research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $296.73.

The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.92, a current ratio of 0.92 and a quick ratio of 0.92. The business’s 50 day moving average price is $304.52 and its 200-day moving average price is $290.87. The firm has a market capitalization of $20.75 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.32, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.82 and a beta of 0.37.

Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 24th. The real estate investment trust reported $1.40 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $3.26 by ($1.86). The firm had revenue of $361.64 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $358.15 million. Essex Property Trust had a return on equity of 6.43% and a net margin of 28.83%. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $3.14 earnings per share. As a group, analysts expect that Essex Property Trust Inc will post 13.29 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, insider John F. Burkart sold 13,807 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $312.62, for a total transaction of $4,316,344.34. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 17,726 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,541,502.12. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Angela L. Kleiman sold 12,327 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $318.00, for a total transaction of $3,919,986.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 18,066 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,744,988. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 37,146 shares of company stock worth $11,698,608. 3.60% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Phocas Financial Corp. lifted its position in Essex Property Trust by 5.9% in the 2nd quarter. Phocas Financial Corp. now owns 4,425 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $1,292,000 after purchasing an additional 248 shares during the last quarter. Magnetar Financial LLC bought a new stake in Essex Property Trust in the 2nd quarter valued at about $1,287,000. Royal Bank of Canada lifted its position in Essex Property Trust by 19.8% in the 2nd quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 352,134 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $102,799,000 after purchasing an additional 58,119 shares during the last quarter. Uniplan Investment Counsel Inc. lifted its position in Essex Property Trust by 5.2% in the 2nd quarter. Uniplan Investment Counsel Inc. now owns 30,964 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $9,039,000 after purchasing an additional 1,537 shares during the last quarter. Finally, HM Payson & Co. bought a new stake in Essex Property Trust in the 2nd quarter valued at about $67,000. 97.01% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Essex Property Trust (NYSE:ESS)

Essex Property Trust, Inc, an S&P 500 company, is a fully integrated real estate investment trust (REIT) that acquires, develops, redevelops, and manages multifamily residential properties in selected West Coast markets. Essex currently has ownership interests in 245 apartment communities with an additional 6 properties in various stages of active development.

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