Short Interest in Lloyds Banking Group plc (NYSE:LYG) Declines By 26.8%

Lloyds Banking Group plc (NYSE:LYG) was the target of a significant drop in short interest in April. As of April 15th, there was short interest totalling 820,400 shares, a drop of 26.8% from the March 31st total of 1,120,000 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 5,900,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 0.1 days.

Several research firms have recently weighed in on LYG. Credit Suisse Group restated an “outperform” rating on shares of Lloyds Banking Group in a research report on Thursday, April 29th. The Goldman Sachs Group upgraded Lloyds Banking Group from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Sunday, February 7th. Societe Generale reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Lloyds Banking Group in a research report on Friday, April 23rd. Barclays reiterated an “overweight” rating on shares of Lloyds Banking Group in a research report on Friday. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reiterated an “outperform” rating on shares of Lloyds Banking Group in a research report on Tuesday, March 2nd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company. Lloyds Banking Group presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $2.75.

LYG stock traded down $0.03 during midday trading on Tuesday, hitting $2.49. 5,573,864 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 6,010,422. The business has a 50-day simple moving average of $2.34 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $1.99. The stock has a market capitalization of $44.16 billion, a PE ratio of 4.75 and a beta of 1.45. Lloyds Banking Group has a 1-year low of $1.17 and a 1-year high of $2.53.

The firm also recently announced a semi-annual dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 4th. Shareholders of record on Friday, April 16th will be paid a dividend of $0.0318 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, April 15th. This represents a yield of 2.6%. Lloyds Banking Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 5.66%.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of LYG. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased its stake in Lloyds Banking Group by 13.0% during the fourth quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 42,542,277 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $83,383,000 after acquiring an additional 4,902,920 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp grew its stake in shares of Lloyds Banking Group by 17.3% in the fourth quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 15,255,048 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $29,900,000 after buying an additional 2,247,723 shares in the last quarter. Bard Financial Services Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Lloyds Banking Group in the fourth quarter valued at $3,635,000. Wells Fargo & Company MN grew its stake in shares of Lloyds Banking Group by 133.2% in the fourth quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 3,142,105 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $6,158,000 after buying an additional 1,794,734 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Capital Wealth Advisors acquired a new stake in shares of Lloyds Banking Group in the first quarter valued at $1,323,000. 1.30% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Lloyds Banking Group

Lloyds Banking Group plc, together with its subsidiaries, provides a range of banking and financial services in the United Kingdom and internationally. It operates through three segments: Retail; Commercial Banking; and Insurance and Wealth. The Retail segment offers a range of financial service products, including current accounts, savings accounts, mortgages, motor finance, unsecured loans, leasing solutions, credit cards, and other financial services to personal and small business customers.

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