United States Cellular Corp (NYSE:USM) Sees Significant Increase in Short Interest

United States Cellular Corp (NYSE:USM) was the target of a large growth in short interest in June. As of June 30th, there was short interest totalling 1,231,600 shares, a growth of 28.4% from the May 30th total of 959,000 shares. Currently, 8.1% of the company’s stock are short sold. Based on an average trading volume of 248,500 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 5.0 days.

In related news, insider Kenneth R. Meyers sold 30,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, June 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $44.05, for a total value of $1,321,500.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 100,632 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,432,839.60. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Deirdre Drake sold 6,530 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $46.59, for a total value of $304,232.70. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 112,472 shares of company stock worth $5,257,975 over the last ninety days. 0.62% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Acadian Asset Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of United States Cellular by 11.4% during the 1st quarter. Acadian Asset Management LLC now owns 829,713 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock valued at $38,094,000 after buying an additional 84,658 shares during the period. AJO LP lifted its holdings in shares of United States Cellular by 20.2% during the 1st quarter. AJO LP now owns 504,217 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock valued at $23,149,000 after buying an additional 84,900 shares during the period. Norges Bank bought a new position in shares of United States Cellular during the 4th quarter valued at $15,669,000. D. E. Shaw & Co. Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of United States Cellular by 21.1% during the 4th quarter. D. E. Shaw & Co. Inc. now owns 267,014 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock valued at $13,877,000 after buying an additional 46,446 shares during the period. Finally, Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. lifted its holdings in shares of United States Cellular by 280.0% during the 1st quarter. Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. now owns 228,867 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock valued at $10,507,000 after buying an additional 168,639 shares during the period. 16.91% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

NYSE USM opened at $46.47 on Friday. The company’s fifty day moving average price is $45.88. The company has a market cap of $4.01 billion, a PE ratio of 26.86, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 34.23 and a beta of 0.72. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.59, a current ratio of 2.29 and a quick ratio of 2.10. United States Cellular has a 1-year low of $32.33 and a 1-year high of $59.74.

United States Cellular (NYSE:USM) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 2nd. The Wireless communications provider reported $0.62 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.46 by $0.16. The firm had revenue of $966.00 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $980.16 million. United States Cellular had a return on equity of 3.76% and a net margin of 4.01%. The company’s revenue was up 2.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.52 EPS. As a group, analysts expect that United States Cellular will post 1.36 EPS for the current fiscal year.

USM has been the topic of several analyst reports. ValuEngine raised Vistra Energy from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 3rd. Zacks Investment Research cut Heritage Insurance from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report on Friday, April 26th. Morgan Stanley upped their price objective on Kimberly Clark from $132.00 to $145.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, June 18th. Finally, Raymond James reaffirmed an “average” rating on shares of PPL in a research report on Monday, May 6th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $56.50.

United States Cellular Company Profile

United States Cellular Corporation provides wireless telecommunications services in the United States. The company offers postpaid and prepaid service plans with voice, messaging, and data usage option services; and smartphone messaging, data, and Internet services, which allow the customer to access the Web and social network sites, e-mail, text, picture, and video messaging, as well as to utilize GPS navigation, and browse and download various applications.

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