Washington Prime Group (NYSE:WPG) Trading Up 7.2%

Washington Prime Group Inc (NYSE:WPG)’s stock price was up 7.2% during mid-day trading on Thursday . The stock traded as high as $3.74 and last traded at $3.73. Approximately 4,777,252 shares traded hands during mid-day trading, an increase of 74% from the average daily volume of 2,737,818 shares. The stock had previously closed at $3.48.

Several equities research analysts recently issued reports on WPG shares. TheStreet upgraded shares of Washington Prime Group from a “d+” rating to a “c” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 7th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Washington Prime Group from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, May 23rd. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Washington Prime Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, April 18th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and one has issued a hold rating to the company’s stock. Washington Prime Group currently has a consensus rating of “Sell” and an average price target of $4.75.

The company has a market capitalization of $695.63 million, a PE ratio of 2.61 and a beta of 0.94. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 3.40, a current ratio of 0.51 and a quick ratio of 0.51. The stock’s fifty day moving average price is $4.28.

Washington Prime Group (NYSE:WPG) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th. The real estate investment trust reported ($0.03) earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.29 by ($0.32). The company had revenue of $168.82 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $169.27 million. Washington Prime Group had a net margin of 9.96% and a return on equity of 7.53%. The firm’s revenue was down 4.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.39 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts predict that Washington Prime Group Inc will post 1.21 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, June 17th. Stockholders of record on Monday, June 3rd were issued a dividend of $0.25 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, May 31st. This represents a $1.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 26.18%. Washington Prime Group’s dividend payout ratio is presently 66.23%.

In other Washington Prime Group news, CEO Louis G. Conforti bought 28,250 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 26th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $3.48 per share, with a total value of $98,310.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the chief executive officer now owns 349,438 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,216,044.24. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, CEO Louis G. Conforti bought 22,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 1st. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $4.55 per share, for a total transaction of $102,375.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have bought 79,050 shares of company stock worth $300,584 over the last ninety days. Insiders own 0.72% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Parallel Advisors LLC bought a new position in Washington Prime Group in the first quarter valued at approximately $31,000. Bank of Montreal Can boosted its position in Washington Prime Group by 97.1% in the first quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 7,396 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $42,000 after buying an additional 3,643 shares in the last quarter. Quantamental Technologies LLC acquired a new stake in Washington Prime Group in the first quarter valued at approximately $48,000. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management acquired a new stake in Washington Prime Group in the first quarter valued at approximately $57,000. Finally, NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc acquired a new stake in Washington Prime Group in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $61,000. 84.61% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About Washington Prime Group (NYSE:WPG)

Washington Prime Group Inc is a retail REIT and a recognized leader in the ownership, management, acquisition and development of retail properties. The Company combines a national real estate portfolio with an investment grade balance sheet, leveraging its expertise across the entire shopping center sector to increase cash flow through rigorous management of assets and provide new opportunities to retailers looking for growth throughout the U.S.

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