Gap Inc (NYSE:GPS) was the recipient of a large growth in short interest during the month of October. As of October 15th, there was short interest totalling 24,844,289 shares, a growth of 19.8% from the September 28th total of 20,740,311 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 4,672,433 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 5.3 days. Currently, 11.7% of the company’s stock are sold short.
Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. IFM Investors Pty Ltd increased its holdings in shares of GAP by 16.4% in the 2nd quarter. IFM Investors Pty Ltd now owns 12,571 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $407,000 after acquiring an additional 1,769 shares during the period. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. increased its holdings in shares of GAP by 28.8% in the 1st quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 7,928 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock worth $246,000 after acquiring an additional 1,772 shares during the period. LPL Financial LLC increased its stake in GAP by 15.0% during the 1st quarter. LPL Financial LLC now owns 13,647 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock valued at $426,000 after buying an additional 1,783 shares during the period. CIBC Asset Management Inc increased its stake in GAP by 5.6% during the 2nd quarter. CIBC Asset Management Inc now owns 33,709 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock valued at $1,092,000 after buying an additional 1,784 shares during the period. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue increased its stake in GAP by 2.7% during the 2nd quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 69,970 shares of the apparel retailer’s stock valued at $2,264,000 after buying an additional 1,830 shares during the period. 58.10% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
GPS stock opened at $27.64 on Tuesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.37, a quick ratio of 1.02 and a current ratio of 1.96. GAP has a fifty-two week low of $25.27 and a fifty-two week high of $35.68. The stock has a market capitalization of $10.42 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.98, a PEG ratio of 1.17 and a beta of 0.64.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 31st. Investors of record on Wednesday, October 10th will be issued a $0.2425 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, October 9th. This represents a $0.97 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.51%. GAP’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 45.54%.
A number of research firms have commented on GPS. Citigroup upgraded shares of GAP from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $28.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Monday, August 27th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Wedbush set a $25.00 price objective on shares of GAP and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 11th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of GAP from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 21st. JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded shares of GAP from a “neutral” rating to an “underweight” rating and reduced their price target for the stock from $30.00 to $24.00 in a research report on Thursday, October 18th. Finally, Guggenheim restated a “hold” rating on shares of GAP in a research report on Friday, August 24th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty have given a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the stock. GAP currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $32.92.
GAP Company Profile
The Gap, Inc operates as an apparel retail company worldwide. The company offers apparel, accessories, and personal care products for men, women, and children under the Old Navy, Gap, Banana Republic, Athleta, and Intermix brands. Its products include denim, tees, button-downs, khakis, and other products; and fitness and lifestyle products for use in yoga, training, sports, travel, and everyday activities to women and girls.
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