American Public Education, Inc. (NASDAQ:APEI) Sees Large Growth in Short Interest

American Public Education, Inc. (NASDAQ:APEI) saw a large growth in short interest in July. As of July 15th, there was short interest totalling 344,900 shares, a growth of 7.4% from the June 30th total of 321,100 shares. Currently, 2.5% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average trading volume of 96,600 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 3.6 days.

A number of research firms recently commented on APEI. Zacks Investment Research upgraded American Public Education from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $32.00 price target for the company in a report on Wednesday, June 24th. BidaskClub downgraded shares of American Public Education from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 15th. BMO Capital Markets raised their price objective on shares of American Public Education from $20.00 to $33.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 13th. Sidoti downgraded shares of American Public Education from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $33.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Friday, May 29th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Barrington Research upgraded shares of American Public Education from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $32.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Tuesday, May 12th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. American Public Education currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $32.50.

In related news, SVP Thomas Beckett sold 1,285 shares of American Public Education stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $32.86, for a total transaction of $42,225.10. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 16,576 shares in the company, valued at $544,687.36. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Wallace E. Jr. Boston sold 10,000 shares of American Public Education stock in a transaction dated Monday, June 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $32.03, for a total value of $320,300.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 419,857 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $13,448,019.71. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 11,485 shares of company stock valued at $368,835 in the last 90 days. 3.73% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Marshall Wace LLP acquired a new position in shares of American Public Education during the first quarter valued at about $56,000. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. raised its holdings in shares of American Public Education by 113.8% during the first quarter. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. now owns 13,686 shares of the company’s stock valued at $412,000 after purchasing an additional 7,286 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its holdings in shares of American Public Education by 15.3% during the fourth quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 5,895 shares of the company’s stock valued at $161,000 after purchasing an additional 782 shares during the period. UBS Group AG raised its holdings in shares of American Public Education by 67.7% during the fourth quarter. UBS Group AG now owns 20,386 shares of the company’s stock valued at $558,000 after purchasing an additional 8,231 shares during the period. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. raised its holdings in shares of American Public Education by 170.5% during the fourth quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 248,460 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,805,000 after purchasing an additional 156,601 shares during the period. 92.17% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of American Public Education stock opened at $29.11 on Friday. The company has a quick ratio of 4.71, a current ratio of 4.71 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.03. American Public Education has a twelve month low of $18.47 and a twelve month high of $34.63. The stock has a market cap of $430.27 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 30.97 and a beta of 0.78. The company’s fifty day moving average is $29.94 and its 200 day moving average is $26.77.

American Public Education (NASDAQ:APEI) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Monday, May 11th. The company reported $0.16 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.17 by ($0.01). The firm had revenue of $74.62 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $74.18 million. American Public Education had a net margin of 3.97% and a return on equity of 4.96%. As a group, equities analysts anticipate that American Public Education will post 0.85 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

American Public Education Company Profile

American Public Education, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides online and campus-based postsecondary education. The company operates through two segments, American Public Education and Hondros College of Nursing. It offers 108 degree programs and 109 certificate programs in various fields of study, including business administration, health science, technology, criminal justice, education, and liberal arts, as well as national security, military studies, intelligence, and homeland security.

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