Hilltop Holdings Inc. (NYSE:HTH) Short Interest Down 37.4% in July

Hilltop Holdings Inc. (NYSE:HTH) saw a significant drop in short interest during the month of July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 1,456,900 shares, a drop of 37.4% from the June 30th total of 2,328,400 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 437,900 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.3 days. Currently, 2.1% of the shares of the company are short sold.

A number of research firms have recently issued reports on HTH. ValuEngine raised Hilltop from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, April 18th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Hilltop from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $24.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, April 30th. Stephens reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $22.00 target price on shares of Hilltop in a research note on Friday, July 26th. Finally, TheStreet upgraded Hilltop from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research note on Friday, July 19th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, three have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $22.50.

Shares of NYSE HTH traded down $0.20 during trading hours on Wednesday, reaching $22.06. 427,785 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 464,134. The company has a market cap of $2.08 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.23 and a beta of 0.88. The company has a quick ratio of 0.85, a current ratio of 0.99 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.03. Hilltop has a 52 week low of $16.43 and a 52 week high of $23.38. The company’s fifty day simple moving average is $21.82.

Hilltop (NYSE:HTH) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, July 25th. The financial services provider reported $0.62 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.38 by $0.24. The company had revenue of $420.75 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $380.83 million. Hilltop had a return on equity of 8.02% and a net margin of 9.56%. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.35 earnings per share. On average, research analysts predict that Hilltop will post 1.85 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, August 30th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, August 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.08 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 14th. This represents a $0.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.45%. Hilltop’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 25.00%.

In other news, insider Hill A. Feinberg sold 40,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, June 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $20.26, for a total value of $810,400.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 809,153 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $16,393,439.78. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Company insiders own 21.20% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of HTH. Norges Bank bought a new position in Hilltop during the 4th quarter worth $23,617,000. Bayview Asset Management LLC bought a new position in Hilltop during the 1st quarter worth $14,523,000. Castine Capital Management LLC bought a new position in Hilltop during the 1st quarter worth $5,931,000. Renaissance Technologies LLC increased its stake in Hilltop by 45.8% during the 2nd quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 826,584 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $17,581,000 after acquiring an additional 259,600 shares during the period. Finally, Comerica Bank increased its stake in Hilltop by 62.7% during the 1st quarter. Comerica Bank now owns 375,145 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $7,203,000 after acquiring an additional 144,570 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 62.17% of the company’s stock.

Hilltop Company Profile

Hilltop Holdings Inc provides banking and financial products and services. The company operates in four segments: Banking, Broker-Dealer, Mortgage Origination, and Insurance. The Banking segment offers savings, checking, interest-bearing checking, and money market accounts; certificates of deposit; lines and letters of credit, home improvement and equity loans, loans for purchasing and carrying securities, equipment loans and leases, agricultural and commercial real estate loans, and other loans; and commercial and industrial loans, and term and construction finance.

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