SLM Corp (SLM) Short Interest Update

SLM Corp (NASDAQ:SLM) was the recipient of a significant drop in short interest in February. As of February 28th, there was short interest totalling 25,344,682 shares, a drop of 7.9% from the February 15th total of 27,526,633 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 2,432,026 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 10.4 days. Approximately 5.9% of the company’s stock are sold short.

A number of research analysts have recently commented on the stock. ValuEngine downgraded shares of SLM from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, March 5th. TheStreet raised shares of SLM from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research report on Monday, January 28th. Wedbush reissued an “outperform” rating on shares of SLM in a research report on Tuesday, January 29th. BMO Capital Markets upgraded SLM from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, January 25th. Finally, BidaskClub cut SLM from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $13.18.

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In related news, SVP Jonathan Boyles sold 68,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $11.20, for a total value of $761,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 67,679 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $758,004.80. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, EVP Paul F. Thome sold 25,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $11.10, for a total transaction of $277,500.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 208,049 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,309,343.90. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 93,805 shares of company stock valued at $1,047,625. Corporate insiders own 0.36% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in SLM. Norges Bank bought a new stake in shares of SLM during the 4th quarter worth about $22,405,000. Bayview Asset Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of SLM during the fourth quarter worth approximately $20,475,000. CI Investments Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of SLM by 33.8% during the fourth quarter. CI Investments Inc. now owns 9,058,926 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $75,280,000 after acquiring an additional 2,289,626 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of SLM by 4.4% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 43,240,757 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $359,332,000 after acquiring an additional 1,823,633 shares during the period. Finally, Portolan Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in shares of SLM by 80.3% during the fourth quarter. Portolan Capital Management LLC now owns 3,875,937 shares of the credit services provider’s stock worth $32,209,000 after acquiring an additional 1,726,393 shares during the period.

SLM stock opened at $10.53 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.67, a current ratio of 1.38 and a quick ratio of 0.21. SLM has a one year low of $7.95 and a one year high of $12.46. The firm has a market cap of $4.63 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.84, a P/E/G ratio of 0.43 and a beta of 1.50.

SLM (NASDAQ:SLM) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 23rd. The credit services provider reported $0.31 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.27 by $0.04. SLM had a net margin of 26.07% and a return on equity of 20.05%. The firm had revenue of $382.87 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $367.40 million. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.19 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 23.8% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, sell-side analysts anticipate that SLM will post 1.25 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 15th. Investors of record on Tuesday, March 5th were issued a dividend of $0.03 per share. This represents a $0.12 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.14%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, March 4th. SLM’s payout ratio is 11.21%.

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About SLM

SLM Corp. engages in the origination, servicing, and administration of education loans. Its services include private education loans, banking, college savings, and insurance services. The company was founded in 1972 and is headquartered in Newark, DE.

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