Occidental Petroleum Co. (NYSE:OXY) Sees Significant Growth in Short Interest

Occidental Petroleum Co. (NYSE:OXY) was the recipient of a significant increase in short interest in March. As of March 13th, there was short interest totalling 50,887,300 shares, an increase of 110.2% from the February 27th total of 24,210,000 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 14,690,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 3.5 days. Approximately 5.7% of the shares of the stock are short sold.

A number of brokerages have recently issued reports on OXY. UBS Group upped their target price on shares of Occidental Petroleum from $40.00 to $43.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, January 24th. Susquehanna Bancshares lowered shares of Occidental Petroleum from a “positive” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $15.00 target price on the stock. in a research report on Monday, March 16th. Wells Fargo & Co lowered shares of Occidental Petroleum from an “equal weight” rating to an “underweight” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 19th. Bank of America lowered shares of Occidental Petroleum from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and reduced their target price for the stock from $75.00 to $30.00 in a research report on Monday, March 9th. Finally, Tudor Pickering upgraded shares of Occidental Petroleum from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $41.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Friday, January 3rd. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating, two have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. Occidental Petroleum has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $37.86.

NYSE OXY traded down $1.22 during trading hours on Friday, hitting $11.61. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 34,606,276 shares, compared to its average volume of 48,222,004. The stock has a fifty day moving average of $28.37 and a 200 day moving average of $38.40. Occidental Petroleum has a twelve month low of $9.00 and a twelve month high of $68.83. The firm has a market capitalization of $11.49 billion, a P/E ratio of -12.90 and a beta of 1.05. The company has a quick ratio of 1.15, a current ratio of 1.25 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.61.

Occidental Petroleum (NYSE:OXY) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 27th. The oil and gas producer reported ($0.30) earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.09) by ($0.21). Occidental Petroleum had a negative net margin of 2.94% and a positive return on equity of 4.82%. The business had revenue of $6.80 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $6.37 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.22 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 41.5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that Occidental Petroleum will post -2.72 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, April 15th. Investors of record on Tuesday, March 10th will be issued a $0.79 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, March 9th. This represents a $3.16 annualized dividend and a yield of 27.22%. Occidental Petroleum’s dividend payout ratio is currently 217.93%.

In related news, Director Elisse B. Walter bought 3,758 shares of Occidental Petroleum stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, March 4th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $32.93 per share, for a total transaction of $123,750.94. Also, SVP Kenneth Dillon bought 10,000 shares of Occidental Petroleum stock in a transaction dated Thursday, March 26th. The shares were bought at an average price of $13.42 per share, for a total transaction of $134,200.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 129,461 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,737,366.62. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders acquired 38,758 shares of company stock worth $631,351. Company insiders own 0.15% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in OXY. Ilmarinen Mutual Pension Insurance Co bought a new stake in Occidental Petroleum in the third quarter valued at approximately $3,853,000. Voya Investment Management LLC increased its stake in Occidental Petroleum by 4.3% in the third quarter. Voya Investment Management LLC now owns 577,517 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $25,682,000 after purchasing an additional 24,012 shares in the last quarter. Redpoint Investment Management Pty Ltd increased its stake in Occidental Petroleum by 23.1% in the third quarter. Redpoint Investment Management Pty Ltd now owns 72,718 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $3,234,000 after purchasing an additional 13,653 shares in the last quarter. New Mexico Educational Retirement Board increased its stake in Occidental Petroleum by 12.5% in the third quarter. New Mexico Educational Retirement Board now owns 69,109 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $3,073,000 after purchasing an additional 7,696 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State Street Corp increased its stake in Occidental Petroleum by 18.8% in the third quarter. State Street Corp now owns 43,480,351 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock valued at $1,967,308,000 after purchasing an additional 6,884,914 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 78.53% of the company’s stock.

Occidental Petroleum Company Profile

Occidental Petroleum Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the acquisition, exploration, and development of oil and gas properties in the United States and internationally. The company operates through three segments: Oil and Gas, Chemical, and Midstream and Marketing. The Oil and Gas segment explores for, develops, and produces oil and condensate, natural gas liquids (NGLs), and natural gas.

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