TransAlta Co. (NYSE:TAC) Short Interest Update

TransAlta Co. (NYSE:TAC) (TSE:TA) was the target of a significant decline in short interest in August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 597,000 shares, a decline of 20.2% from the July 31st total of 747,700 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 163,400 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.7 days. Approximately 0.2% of the company’s stock are short sold.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Millennium Management LLC bought a new position in shares of TransAlta in the fourth quarter worth approximately $62,000. Jane Street Group LLC bought a new position in shares of TransAlta in the second quarter worth approximately $80,000. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank lifted its stake in shares of TransAlta by 12.5% in the second quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 18,660 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $122,000 after buying an additional 2,068 shares in the last quarter. Man Group plc bought a new position in shares of TransAlta in the second quarter worth approximately $125,000. Finally, Shell Asset Management Co. lifted its stake in shares of TransAlta by 15.5% in the first quarter. Shell Asset Management Co. now owns 24,600 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $181,000 after buying an additional 3,300 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 49.09% of the company’s stock.

Several research firms recently commented on TAC. ValuEngine lowered shares of TransAlta from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Saturday, July 27th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of TransAlta from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, September 4th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. TransAlta presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $6.75.

Shares of NYSE TAC traded down $0.07 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $6.48. The stock had a trading volume of 114,209 shares, compared to its average volume of 150,245. The business’s 50 day moving average is $6.35 and its 200-day moving average is $6.53. The company has a market cap of $1.87 billion, a P/E ratio of -12.23 and a beta of 1.19. TransAlta has a 52 week low of $3.99 and a 52 week high of $7.61. The company has a quick ratio of 1.36, a current ratio of 1.74 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.98.

TransAlta (NYSE:TAC) (TSE:TA) last issued its earnings results on Friday, August 9th. The utilities provider reported ($0.02) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of ($0.08) by $0.06. The firm had revenue of $371.56 million for the quarter. TransAlta had a negative net margin of 9.91% and a negative return on equity of 6.16%. As a group, analysts expect that TransAlta will post -0.14 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 1st. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, September 3rd will be paid a $0.031 dividend. This represents a $0.12 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.91%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, August 30th. This is an increase from TransAlta’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.03. TransAlta’s dividend payout ratio is currently -22.64%.

About TransAlta

TransAlta Corporation operates as non-regulated electricity generation and energy marketing company in Canada, the United States, and Western Australia. It operates through eight segments: Canadian Coal, U.S. Coal, Canadian Gas, Australian Gas, Wind and Solar, Hydro, Energy Marketing, and Corporate. The company generates and markets electricity through various generation fuels, such as coal, natural gas, water, solar, and wind.

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