IBM Retirement Fund Sells 10,628 Shares of Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT)

IBM Retirement Fund lessened its holdings in shares of Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMATGet Rating) by 41.1% in the 4th quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 15,246 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock after selling 10,628 shares during the quarter. IBM Retirement Fund’s holdings in Applied Materials were worth $2,399,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds have also bought and sold shares of the stock. Capital World Investors increased its position in Applied Materials by 3.6% during the 3rd quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 26,260,338 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock valued at $3,380,486,000 after purchasing an additional 908,866 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its holdings in Applied Materials by 13.1% during the third quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 16,953,802 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock valued at $2,177,497,000 after buying an additional 1,958,477 shares during the period. Parnassus Investments LLC raised its stake in Applied Materials by 5.7% in the third quarter. Parnassus Investments LLC now owns 7,084,784 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $912,024,000 after buying an additional 381,189 shares in the last quarter. Deutsche Bank AG lifted its holdings in Applied Materials by 12.1% during the third quarter. Deutsche Bank AG now owns 6,930,298 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock worth $892,136,000 after buying an additional 747,990 shares during the period. Finally, Vulcan Value Partners LLC increased its holdings in shares of Applied Materials by 97.5% in the 3rd quarter. Vulcan Value Partners LLC now owns 6,067,153 shares of the manufacturing equipment provider’s stock valued at $781,025,000 after acquiring an additional 2,995,539 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 77.05% of the company’s stock.

Shares of AMAT stock traded up $6.07 during trading on Thursday, reaching $130.48. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 9,665,413 shares, compared to its average volume of 8,929,106. The company has a market capitalization of $115.27 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.15, a P/E/G ratio of 1.36 and a beta of 1.41. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $137.46 and its 200 day moving average price is $141.29. Applied Materials, Inc. has a 1-year low of $112.14 and a 1-year high of $167.06. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.46, a current ratio of 2.51 and a quick ratio of 1.78.

Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMATGet Rating) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 16th. The manufacturing equipment provider reported $1.89 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.85 by $0.04. The firm had revenue of $6.27 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.16 billion. Applied Materials had a net margin of 27.10% and a return on equity of 55.62%. Applied Materials’s quarterly revenue was up 21.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.39 earnings per share. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Applied Materials, Inc. will post 8.07 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Applied Materials announced that its board has approved a stock repurchase plan on Friday, March 11th that allows the company to repurchase $6.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the manufacturing equipment provider to reacquire up to 5.5% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 16th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, May 26th will be paid a dividend of $0.26 per share. This represents a $1.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.80%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, May 25th. This is a positive change from Applied Materials’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.24. Applied Materials’s dividend payout ratio is currently 13.35%.

Several equities analysts have issued reports on AMAT shares. Piper Sandler cut their target price on Applied Materials from $158.00 to $153.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, February 17th. Citigroup increased their target price on shares of Applied Materials from $178.00 to $180.00 in a research report on Thursday, February 17th. Morgan Stanley upped their price target on Applied Materials from $150.00 to $160.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 15th. Needham & Company LLC raised their price objective on Applied Materials from $166.00 to $172.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, February 17th. Finally, Jefferies Financial Group began coverage on Applied Materials in a research report on Wednesday, January 5th. They set a “buy” rating and a $197.00 target price on the stock. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $170.66.

Applied Materials Profile (Get Rating)

Applied Materials, Inc provides manufacturing equipment, services and software to the semiconductor, display and related industries. It operates through the following segments: Semiconductor Systems, Applied Global Services, and Display & Adjacent Markets. The Semiconductor Systems segment includes semiconductor capital equipment for etch, rapid thermal processing, deposition, chemical mechanical planarization, metrology and inspection, wafer packaging, and ion implantation.

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