Great Ajax Corp. (NYSE: AJX- Get a rating) benefited from strong growth in short-term interest during the month of April. As of April 15, there was short interest totaling 636,300 shares, up 18.9% from the March 31 total of 535,300 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume of 90,700 shares, the day-to-cover ratio is currently 7.0 days. Approximately 3.0% of the company’s shares are sold short.
Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Royal Bank of Canada increased its stake in Great Ajax shares by 2.5% in the third quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 45,694 shares of the REIT valued at $617,000 after buying 1,116 more shares last quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA increased its stake in Great Ajax by 51.2% during the third quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 6,261 shares of the real estate investment trust worth $84,000 after buying 2,119 additional shares in the last quarter. Invesco Ltd. increased its holdings in Great Ajax by 6.2% in the third quarter. Invesco Ltd. now owns 38,355 shares of the real estate investment trust worth $517,000 after purchasing an additional 2,256 shares in the last quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. increased its holdings in Great Ajax by 4.2% during the fourth quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. now owns 56,308 shares of the real estate investment trust worth $742,000 after buying 2,263 additional shares in the last quarter. Finally, Citigroup Inc. increased its stake in Great Ajax by 6.0% during the fourth quarter. Citigroup Inc. now owns 69,463 shares of the real estate investment trust worth $914,000 after buying 3,908 additional shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors hold 80.85% of the company’s shares.
A number of research companies have recently published reports on AJX. JMP Securities lowered its price target on Great Ajax from $15.00 to $11.00 and set a “market outperformance” rating on the stock in a Tuesday, April 26 research note. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Great Ajax from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a price target of $10.00 on the stock in a research note on Tuesday. StockNews.com began covering Great Ajax in a research note on Thursday March 31. They issued a “hold” rating on the stock. Finally, Compass Point downgraded Great Ajax from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a target price of $11.00 on the stock. in a Friday, April 8 research note. Two research analysts rated the stock with a hold rating and four assigned the stock a buy rating. According to data from MarketBeat.com, Great Ajax has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $13.20.
Shares of AJX opened at $9.70 on Wednesday. The company has a 50-day moving average of $10.75. Great Ajax has a 12-month low of $9.06 and a 12-month high of $14.74. The stock has a market capitalization of $225.12 million, a P/E ratio of 6.83 and a beta of 1.80. The company has a quick ratio of 2.20, a current ratio of 2.20 and a debt ratio of 1.76.
Greater Ajax (NYSE:AJX – Get a rating) last announced its results on Thursday, March 3. The real estate investment trust reported earnings per share of $0.32 for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.37 per ($0.05). Great Ajax had a net margin of 54.37% and a return on equity of 10.30%. In the same period of the previous year, the company earned earnings per share of $0.41. Research analysts expect Great Ajax to post EPS of 1.44 for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, March 31. Investors of record on Friday, March 18 received a dividend of $0.26. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, March 17. This is an increase from Great Ajax’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.24. This represents a dividend of $1.04 on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 10.72%. Great Ajax’s payout ratio is 73.24%.
About Greater Ajax (Get a rating)
Great Ajax Corp., a real estate company, acquires, invests and manages a portfolio of low balance residential mortgages and commercial mortgages. The Company also holds real estate properties acquired through foreclosure or other settlement of its non-performing loans, as well as through outright purchases.
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