BP p.l.c. Sees Unusually Large Options Volume (NYSE:BP)

BP p.l.c. (NYSE:BP) saw some unusual options trading activity on Friday. Investors bought 5,637 call options on the stock. This represents an increase of 118% compared to the typical daily volume of 2,582 call options.

Shares of BP p.l.c. (NYSE:BP) traded up 0.18% during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $34.16. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 4,741,106 shares. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $35.06 and its 200-day moving average is $34.93. BP p.l.c. has a 52-week low of $32.53 and a 52-week high of $38.68. The company has a market capitalization of $112.38 billion, a PE ratio of 29.81 and a beta of 0.94.

BP p.l.c. (NYSE:BP) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, August 1st. The oil and gas exploration company reported $0.21 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.39 by $0.18. BP p.l.c. had a return on equity of 3.64% and a net margin of 1.74%. The firm had revenue of $56.51 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $56.09 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.23 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 21.7% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts forecast that BP p.l.c. will post $1.69 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 22nd. Investors of record on Friday, August 11th will be paid a $0.595 dividend. This represents a $2.38 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 6.97%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 9th. BP p.l.c.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 206.96%.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Morgan Stanley boosted its stake in shares of BP p.l.c. by 11.2% in the first quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 6,186,085 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $213,544,000 after buying an additional 623,612 shares during the period. Stonebridge Capital Advisors LLC boosted its stake in shares of BP p.l.c. by 3.8% in the first quarter. Stonebridge Capital Advisors LLC now owns 63,117 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $2,179,000 after buying an additional 2,304 shares during the period. HighPoint Advisor Group LLC boosted its stake in shares of BP p.l.c. by 9.0% in the fourth quarter. HighPoint Advisor Group LLC now owns 61,404 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $2,102,000 after buying an additional 5,086 shares during the period. Orbis Allan Gray Ltd boosted its stake in shares of BP p.l.c. by 68.8% in the fourth quarter. Orbis Allan Gray Ltd now owns 827,125 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $30,918,000 after buying an additional 337,242 shares during the period. Finally, Heritage Investors Management Corp boosted its stake in shares of BP p.l.c. by 0.9% in the first quarter. Heritage Investors Management Corp now owns 22,965 shares of the oil and gas exploration company’s stock valued at $793,000 after buying an additional 200 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 9.96% of the company’s stock.

Several brokerages recently weighed in on BP. BidaskClub raised BP p.l.c. from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, August 3rd. Piper Jaffray Companies upgraded BP p.l.c. from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and raised their price target for the company from $36.33 to $42.00 in a research report on Friday, August 4th. Jefferies Group LLC set a $36.00 price target on BP p.l.c. and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 17th. TheStreet upgraded BP p.l.c. from a “c” rating to a “b-” rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 30th. Finally, Argus raised their price target on BP p.l.c. from $36.00 to $41.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, June 1st. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $36.51.

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About BP p.l.c.

BP p.l.c. is an integrated oil and gas company. The Company owns an interest in OJSC Oil Company Rosneft (Rosneft), an oil and gas company. The Company’s segments include Upstream, Downstream, Rosneft, and Other businesses and corporate. The Upstream segment is engaged in oil and natural gas exploration, field development and production, as well as midstream transportation, storage and processing.

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