Zacks Investment Research Lowers Equity Commonwealth (EQC) to Sell

Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Equity Commonwealth (NYSE:EQC) from a buy rating to a sell rating in a report published on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Equity Commonwealth is an internally managed and self-advised real estate investment trust. It primarily owns office buildings located throughout the United States. The majority of its portfolio consists of office buildings located in central business districts, or CBDs, of major metropolitan markets. Equity Commonwealth, formerly known as CommonWealth REIT, is based in Chicago. “

EQC has been the subject of several other research reports. Stifel Nicolaus cut shares of Equity Commonwealth from a buy rating to a hold rating and set a $34.00 price target for the company. in a research report on Wednesday, August 1st. They noted that the move was a valuation call. ValuEngine raised shares of Equity Commonwealth from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 15th. Finally, Citigroup raised their price target on shares of Equity Commonwealth from $31.00 to $32.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a research report on Thursday, August 9th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Equity Commonwealth has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $33.75.

EQC stock traded down $0.07 during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $28.68. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 953,623 shares, compared to its average volume of 727,574. The company has a quick ratio of 63.57, a current ratio of 63.57 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.08. Equity Commonwealth has a 52-week low of $27.96 and a 52-week high of $32.66. The stock has a market capitalization of $3.90 billion, a PE ratio of 31.17 and a beta of 0.28.

Equity Commonwealth (NYSE:EQC) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Monday, July 30th. The real estate investment trust reported $0.17 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.14 by $0.03. Equity Commonwealth had a net margin of 92.07% and a return on equity of 7.27%. The company had revenue of $48.60 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $59.06 million. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.22 EPS. The firm’s revenue was down 46.9% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that Equity Commonwealth will post 0.68 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 23rd. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, October 9th will be given a dividend of $2.50 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, October 5th.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in EQC. Segall Bryant & Hamill LLC lifted its position in shares of Equity Commonwealth by 122.5% during the 2nd quarter. Segall Bryant & Hamill LLC now owns 1,105,466 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $34,822,000 after purchasing an additional 608,693 shares during the last quarter. Resolution Capital Ltd lifted its position in shares of Equity Commonwealth by 23.9% during the 2nd quarter. Resolution Capital Ltd now owns 2,288,415 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $72,085,000 after purchasing an additional 441,300 shares during the last quarter. Nuance Investments LLC lifted its position in shares of Equity Commonwealth by 15.0% during the 2nd quarter. Nuance Investments LLC now owns 2,220,339 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $69,941,000 after purchasing an additional 289,572 shares during the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. lifted its position in shares of Equity Commonwealth by 307.3% during the 2nd quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 378,580 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $11,925,000 after purchasing an additional 285,640 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Caisse DE Depot ET Placement DU Quebec purchased a new stake in shares of Equity Commonwealth during the 2nd quarter worth $4,725,000. 98.32% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Equity Commonwealth Company Profile

Equity Commonwealth (NYSE: EQC) is a Chicago based, internally managed and self-advised real estate investment trust (REIT) with commercial office properties in the United States. As of June 30, 2018, EQC's portfolio comprised 13 properties and 6.3 million square feet.

Further Reading: Understanding Price to Earnings Ratio (PE)

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