Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA (ITUB) Sees Significant Increase in Short Interest

Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA (NYSE:ITUB) was the recipient of a large increase in short interest during the month of August. As of August 15th, there was short interest totalling 15,587,524 shares, an increase of 34.6% from the July 31st total of 11,583,153 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 10,534,312 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 1.5 days. Approximately 0.5% of the shares of the company are sold short.

Shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA (NYSE:ITUB) traded up 1.67% on Friday, hitting $13.97. The stock had a trading volume of 9,797,970 shares. Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA has a 52 week low of $9.10 and a 52 week high of $14.01. The company has a market cap of $90.79 billion, a PE ratio of 12.15 and a beta of 1.60. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $12.83 and its 200 day moving average price is $12.02.

Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock buyback program on Thursday, August 31st that allows the company to buyback 60,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization allows the bank to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The firm also recently announced a monthly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, November 13th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, October 3rd will be paid a dividend of $0.0048 per share. This is an increase from Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA’s previous monthly dividend of $0.00. This represents a $0.06 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.41%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, October 2nd. Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA’s payout ratio is currently 5.36%.

Several research firms recently weighed in on ITUB. ValuEngine upgraded Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a report on Friday, September 1st. Citigroup Inc. lowered Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, August 25th. Finally, J P Morgan Chase & Co lowered Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $12.50 price target for the company. in a report on Wednesday, July 12th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $13.25.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of ITUB. DnB Asset Management AS boosted its stake in shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA by 11.7% during the 1st quarter. DnB Asset Management AS now owns 53,516 shares of the bank’s stock worth $646,000 after acquiring an additional 5,600 shares during the period. Conning Inc. bought a new position in shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA during the 1st quarter worth approximately $190,000. Rockefeller Financial Services Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA by 0.9% during the 1st quarter. Rockefeller Financial Services Inc. now owns 146,099 shares of the bank’s stock worth $1,763,000 after acquiring an additional 1,271 shares during the period. APG Asset Management N.V. boosted its stake in shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA by 3.5% during the 1st quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 4,041,281 shares of the bank’s stock worth $48,778,000 after acquiring an additional 135,000 shares during the period. Finally, Eqis Capital Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA during the 1st quarter worth approximately $427,000. Institutional investors own 4.41% of the company’s stock.

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Itau Unibanco Banco Holding SA Company Profile

Itau Unibanco Holding SA is a holding company. The Company provides a range of financial products and services to individual and corporate clients in Brazil and abroad. The Company operates through three segments: Retail Banking, Wholesale Banking, and Activities with the Market + Corporation. The Retail Banking segment offers banking products and services to a diversified client base of account holders and non-account holders, individuals and companies.

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