J C Penney Company Inc (NYSE:JCP) Short Interest Up 5.2% in September

J C Penney Company Inc (NYSE:JCP) was the target of a significant increase in short interest in September. As of September 30th, there was short interest totalling 133,540,000 shares, an increase of 5.2% from the August 30th total of 126,970,000 shares. Currently, 45.7% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 11,590,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 11.5 days.

JCP traded up $0.02 on Thursday, reaching $1.04. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 79,920 shares, compared to its average volume of 9,075,993. The stock has a market cap of $328.62 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of -1.12 and a beta of 1.56. J C Penney has a 1 year low of $0.53 and a 1 year high of $1.91. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 4.86, a current ratio of 1.37 and a quick ratio of 0.21. The business’s 50 day moving average is $0.88 and its 200 day moving average is $1.01.

J C Penney (NYSE:JCP) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 15th. The department store operator reported ($0.18) EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.32) by $0.14. The firm had revenue of $2.51 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.62 billion. J C Penney had a negative return on equity of 29.24% and a negative net margin of 2.38%. J C Penney’s revenue for the quarter was down 9.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted ($0.38) earnings per share. As a group, research analysts forecast that J C Penney will post -1.22 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Separately, B. Riley assumed coverage on J C Penney in a report on Friday, August 16th. They issued a “hold” rating and a $1.00 price target for the company. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and three have given a hold rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $1.44.

In related news, Director Ronald W. Tysoe bought 1,000,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 16th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $0.59 per share, for a total transaction of $590,000.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now owns 1,352,128 shares in the company, valued at $797,755.52. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Lisa A. Payne bought 230,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, September 6th. The stock was bought at an average price of $0.79 per share, with a total value of $181,700.00. Following the purchase, the director now owns 517,890 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $409,133.10. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders bought 1,830,000 shares of company stock valued at $1,125,700. Insiders own 1.41% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of JCP. Marshall Wace North America L.P. bought a new position in J C Penney during the 1st quarter worth approximately $41,000. Stone Ridge Asset Management LLC bought a new position in J C Penney during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $74,000. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in J C Penney by 103.9% during the 1st quarter. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC now owns 142,487 shares of the department store operator’s stock worth $212,000 after buying an additional 72,608 shares during the last quarter. Aperio Group LLC lifted its holdings in J C Penney by 10.7% during the 2nd quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 147,626 shares of the department store operator’s stock worth $168,000 after buying an additional 14,247 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. lifted its holdings in J C Penney by 16.3% during the 2nd quarter. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. now owns 169,140 shares of the department store operator’s stock worth $193,000 after buying an additional 23,726 shares during the last quarter. 66.71% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About J C Penney

J. C. Penney Company, Inc, through its subsidiary J. C. Penney Corporation, Inc, sells merchandise through department stores. The company primarily sells family apparel and footwear, accessories, fine and fashion jewelry, beauty products, and home furnishings; and provides services, including styling salon, optical, portrait photography, and custom decorating services.

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