National-Oilwell Varco, Inc. (NYSE:NOV) was the recipient of a significant drop in short interest in the month of March. As of March 29th, there was short interest totalling 11,314,084 shares, a drop of 22.4% from the March 15th total of 14,578,560 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 3,250,074 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 3.5 days. Approximately 3.0% of the shares of the company are short sold.

In other National-Oilwell Varco news, VP Scott K. Duff sold 15,125 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, February 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $28.02, for a total transaction of $423,802.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 54,098 shares in the company, valued at $1,515,825.96. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. 0.79% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Truvestments Capital LLC purchased a new position in shares of National-Oilwell Varco during the first quarter worth approximately $26,000. IMS Capital Management purchased a new position in shares of National-Oilwell Varco during the third quarter worth approximately $44,000. JOYN Advisors Inc. raised its stake in shares of National-Oilwell Varco by 166.2% during the fourth quarter. JOYN Advisors Inc. now owns 1,046 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock worth $27,000 after acquiring an additional 653 shares in the last quarter. Enlightenment Research LLC purchased a new position in shares of National-Oilwell Varco during the fourth quarter worth approximately $28,000. Finally, Moody National Bank Trust Division raised its stake in shares of National-Oilwell Varco by 125.0% during the first quarter. Moody National Bank Trust Division now owns 1,233 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock worth $33,000 after acquiring an additional 685 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 93.47% of the company’s stock.

A number of brokerages have weighed in on NOV. Raymond James cut their target price on shares of National-Oilwell Varco from $40.00 to $35.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a research report on Monday. Barclays cut their price objective on shares of National-Oilwell Varco from $32.00 to $28.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Monday. Cowen set a $23.00 price objective on shares of National-Oilwell Varco and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday. Goldman Sachs Group initiated coverage on shares of National-Oilwell Varco in a research report on Sunday, March 10th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $33.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of National-Oilwell Varco from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, February 12th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have given a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company. National-Oilwell Varco has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $38.21.

Shares of National-Oilwell Varco stock opened at $27.53 on Tuesday. National-Oilwell Varco has a 1 year low of $24.27 and a 1 year high of $49.08. The company has a market cap of $11.25 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of -344.13, a P/E/G ratio of 25.81 and a beta of 1.22. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.19, a current ratio of 3.11 and a quick ratio of 1.83.

National-Oilwell Varco (NYSE:NOV) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, February 6th. The oil and gas exploration company reported $0.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.08 by ($0.05). National-Oilwell Varco had a negative net margin of 0.37% and a negative return on equity of 0.22%. The company had revenue of $2.40 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.18 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned ($0.04) earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 21.8% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts predict that National-Oilwell Varco will post 0.19 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 29th. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 15th were given a dividend of $0.05 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, March 14th. This represents a $0.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.73%. National-Oilwell Varco’s payout ratio is presently -250.00%.

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National-Oilwell Varco Company Profile

National Oilwell Varco, Inc designs, manufactures, and sells systems, components, and products for oil and gas drilling and production worldwide. It operates in three segments: Wellbore Technologies, Completion & Production Solutions, and Rig Technologies. The Wellbore Technologies segment offers various equipment and technologies used to perform drilling operations.

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