Patterson-UTI Energy Inc. (NASDAQ:PTEN) was the recipient of a large decrease in short interest during the month of November. As of November 15th, there was short interest totalling 22,068,238 shares, a decrease of 13.7% from the October 31st total of 25,580,582 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 3,227,948 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 6.8 days. Approximately 15.2% of the shares of the stock are sold short.

Shares of Patterson-UTI Energy (NASDAQ:PTEN) opened at 26.67 on Thursday. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $23.36 and a 200 day moving average price of $20.87. Patterson-UTI Energy has a one year low of $10.94 and a one year high of $25.01. The firm’s market cap is $3.91 billion.

Patterson-UTI Energy (NASDAQ:PTEN) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 27th. The company reported ($0.58) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.60) by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $206.10 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $205.31 million. Patterson-UTI Energy had a negative return on equity of 12.24% and a negative net margin of 29.69%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 51.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned ($0.26) EPS. On average, analysts forecast that Patterson-UTI Energy will post ($2.31) earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 22nd. Investors of record on Thursday, December 8th will be issued a $0.02 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, December 6th. This represents a $0.08 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.30%. Patterson-UTI Energy’s dividend payout ratio is presently -3.92%.

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans increased its stake in Patterson-UTI Energy by 154.4% in the second quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans now owns 1,907,240 shares of the company’s stock valued at $40,663,000 after buying an additional 1,157,420 shares in the last quarter. Pioneer Investment Management Inc. purchased a new stake in Patterson-UTI Energy during the third quarter valued at about $24,372,000. Teacher Retirement System of Texas increased its stake in Patterson-UTI Energy by 5,069.9% in the third quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 1,061,331 shares of the company’s stock valued at $23,742,000 after buying an additional 1,040,802 shares in the last quarter. Scout Investments Inc. purchased a new stake in Patterson-UTI Energy during the second quarter valued at about $22,101,000. Finally, Waddell & Reed Financial Inc. increased its stake in Patterson-UTI Energy by 99.2% in the second quarter. Waddell & Reed Financial Inc. now owns 2,022,280 shares of the company’s stock valued at $43,115,000 after buying an additional 1,006,850 shares in the last quarter.

A number of research analysts have recently commented on the company. Citigroup Inc. lowered their target price on Patterson-UTI Energy from $22.00 to $21.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, September 12th. Bank of America Corp. upgraded Patterson-UTI Energy from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday. Nomura set a $18.00 target price on Patterson-UTI Energy and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 16th. Jefferies Group reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $29.00 target price on shares of Patterson-UTI Energy in a research report on Wednesday, October 19th. Finally, Gabelli upgraded Patterson-UTI Energy from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $26.00 target price for the company in a research report on Wednesday, September 14th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and fifteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $20.30.

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About Patterson-UTI Energy

Patterson-UTI Energy, Inc owns and operates fleets of land-based drilling rigs and a fleet of pressure pumping equipment in the United States. The Company operates in three segments: Contract Drilling, Pressure Pumping, and Oil and Natural Gas. The Company provides contract drilling services to oil and natural gas operators in the continental United States, and western and northern Canada.

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