Evercore ISI upgraded shares of AvalonBay Communities Inc. (NYSE:AVB) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report released on Monday morning. They currently have $179.00 target price on the real estate investment trust’s stock.

A number of other equities research analysts have also issued reports on the company. Jefferies Group reiterated a hold rating on shares of AvalonBay Communities in a research note on Monday, August 1st. Deutsche Bank AG cut their price target on AvalonBay Communities from $194.00 to $193.00 and set a buy rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, August 10th. Sandler O’Neill upgraded AvalonBay Communities from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 6th. BTIG Research assumed coverage on AvalonBay Communities in a research note on Thursday, August 25th. They issued a buy rating and a $208.00 price target for the company. Finally, Cantor Fitzgerald set a $188.00 price target on AvalonBay Communities and gave the stock a hold rating in a research note on Monday, October 24th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $194.56.

AvalonBay Communities (NYSE:AVB) opened at 164.49 on Monday. AvalonBay Communities has a 12-month low of $158.32 and a 12-month high of $192.29. The stock has a market cap of $22.59 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.86 and a beta of 0.39. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $167.21 and a 200 day moving average price of $175.33.

AvalonBay Communities (NYSE:AVB) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, October 24th. The real estate investment trust reported $2.11 EPS for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $2.11. AvalonBay Communities had a return on equity of 9.57% and a net margin of 50.39%. During the same period last year, the business posted $2.02 earnings per share. On average, analysts forecast that AvalonBay Communities will post $8.28 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, January 16th. Investors of record on Friday, December 30th will be issued a $1.35 dividend. This is an increase from AvalonBay Communities’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.01. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, December 28th. This represents a $5.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.28%. AvalonBay Communities’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 78.37%.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Bailard Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities during the second quarter valued at about $477,000. ING Groep NV purchased a new stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities during the second quarter valued at about $872,000. Mizuho Trust & Banking Co. Ltd. increased its stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities by 2.8% in the second quarter. Mizuho Trust & Banking Co. Ltd. now owns 247,162 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $44,586,000 after buying an additional 6,748 shares during the last quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities by 0.5% in the second quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC now owns 9,483 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $1,711,000 after buying an additional 48 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Meag Munich Ergo Kapitalanlagegesellschaft MBH increased its stake in shares of AvalonBay Communities by 267.6% in the second quarter. Meag Munich Ergo Kapitalanlagegesellschaft MBH now owns 112,121 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $20,124,000 after buying an additional 81,621 shares during the last quarter. 95.84% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About AvalonBay Communities

AvalonBay Communities, Inc is a real estate investment trust. The Company focuses on the development, redevelopment, acquisition, ownership and operation of multifamily communities primarily in New England, the New York/New Jersey metro area, the Mid-Atlantic, the Pacific Northwest, and Northern and Southern California.

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