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Unilever PLC (NYSE:UL) Short Interest Update

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Unilever PLC (NYSE:UL – Get Rating) was the recipient of a large decrease in short interest during the month of September. As of September 15th, there was short interest totalling 3,200,000 shares, a decrease of 14.0% from the August 31st total of 3,720,000 shares. Approximately 0.1% of the shares of the stock are sold short. Based on an average trading volume of 2,430,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 1.3 days.

Analyst Ratings Changes

Several analysts recently weighed in on UL shares. DZ Bank lowered Unilever from a "buy" rating to a "hold" rating in a report on Wednesday, July 27th. Berenberg Bank upgraded Unilever from a "hold" rating to a "buy" rating in a research note on Monday. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft upgraded Unilever from a "hold" rating to a "buy" rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 26th. StockNews.com assumed coverage on Unilever in a research note on Friday, September 16th. They issued a "buy" rating on the stock. Finally, Morgan Stanley assumed coverage on Unilever in a research note on Thursday. They issued an "equal weight" rating on the stock. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. According to MarketBeat, the stock presently has an average rating of "Hold".

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Hedge Funds Weigh In On Unilever

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Wellington Management Group LLP boosted its position in Unilever by 16.0% during the first quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 17,225,391 shares of the company's stock valued at $784,961,000 after purchasing an additional 2,378,067 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC boosted its position in Unilever by 10.7% during the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 7,687,577 shares of the company's stock valued at $352,322,000 after purchasing an additional 744,885 shares in the last quarter. Pendal Group Ltd boosted its position in Unilever by 1.8% during the second quarter. Pendal Group Ltd now owns 5,652,249 shares of the company's stock valued at $256,035,000 after purchasing an additional 99,566 shares in the last quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN boosted its position in Unilever by 15.3% during the second quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 5,455,451 shares of the company's stock valued at $250,024,000 after purchasing an additional 724,641 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Capital International Investors boosted its position in Unilever by 0.6% during the first quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 5,042,546 shares of the company's stock valued at $229,988,000 after purchasing an additional 28,870 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 9.68% of the company's stock.

Unilever Stock Performance

Shares of Unilever stock opened at $44.24 on Thursday. Unilever has a 12 month low of $42.54 and a 12 month high of $55.01. The stock's fifty day moving average price is $46.56 and its 200-day moving average price is $45.78.

Unilever Increases Dividend

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 1st. Stockholders of record on Friday, August 5th were paid a dividend of $0.4555 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, August 4th. This represents a $1.82 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.12%. This is a positive change from Unilever's previous quarterly dividend of $0.45.

About Unilever

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Unilever PLC operates as a fast-moving consumer goods company. It operates through Beauty & Personal Care, Foods & Refreshment, and Home Care segments. The Beauty & Personal Care segment provides skin care and hair care products, deodorants, and skin cleansing products. The Foods & Refreshment segment offers ice cream, soups, bouillons, seasonings, mayonnaise, ketchups, and tea categories.

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