M.D.C. Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:MDC) Sees Significant Increase in Short Interest

M.D.C. Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:MDC) saw a significant increase in short interest in the month of January. As of January 31st, there was short interest totalling 1,700,000 shares, an increase of 6.9% from the January 15th total of 1,590,000 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 569,800 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.0 days. Approximately 3.4% of the company’s stock are sold short.

Shares of NYSE MDC traded down $0.10 during trading on Friday, reaching $44.77. The company had a trading volume of 349,973 shares. M.D.C. has a 12-month low of $27.13 and a 12-month high of $48.99. The business’s 50-day moving average is $41.90 and its 200 day moving average is $40.38.

M.D.C. (NYSE:MDC) last released its earnings results on Thursday, January 30th. The construction company reported $1.42 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.27 by $0.15. The company had revenue of $1.07 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.07 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.95 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up 25.2% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, analysts forecast that M.D.C. will post 4.36 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, February 26th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, February 12th will be paid a $0.33 dividend. This is a boost from M.D.C.’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.30. This represents a $1.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.95%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, February 11th.

Several brokerages recently weighed in on MDC. Cfra raised M.D.C. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 31st. Wells Fargo & Co cut M.D.C. from an “equal weight” rating to an “underweight” rating and increased their target price for the stock from $39.00 to $42.00 in a research note on Friday, January 31st. Zacks Investment Research raised M.D.C. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $42.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Saturday, January 4th. ValuEngine cut M.D.C. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 3rd. Finally, Zelman & Associates cut M.D.C. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 31st. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating, two have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $43.50.

In related news, CEO Larry A. Mizel sold 60,224 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, February 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $44.72, for a total value of $2,693,217.28. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 212,340 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $9,495,844.80. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, COO David D. Mandarich sold 100,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, February 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $44.63, for a total value of $4,463,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 4,119,715 shares in the company, valued at $183,862,880.45. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders sold 176,876 shares of company stock worth $7,889,072. 26.30% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in shares of M.D.C. by 6.5% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 8,894,057 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $291,547,000 after buying an additional 539,112 shares during the last quarter. CVentures Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of M.D.C. during the fourth quarter valued at $308,192,000. State Street Corp boosted its position in shares of M.D.C. by 5.9% during the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 1,806,991 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $68,955,000 after buying an additional 100,661 shares during the last quarter. Investment Counselors of Maryland LLC boosted its position in shares of M.D.C. by 2.9% during the fourth quarter. Investment Counselors of Maryland LLC now owns 814,220 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $31,071,000 after buying an additional 22,785 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Vaughan Nelson Investment Management L.P. purchased a new stake in shares of M.D.C. during the fourth quarter valued at $30,557,000. 75.78% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About M.D.C.

M.DC Holdings, Inc, through its subsidiaries, engages in the homebuilding and financial service businesses. Its homebuilding operations include purchasing finished lots or developing lots for the construction and sale primarily of single-family detached homes to first-time and first-time move-up homebuyers under the Richmond American Homes name.

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