Waterstone Financial, Inc. (NASDAQ:WSBF) Short Interest Up 34.9% in February

Waterstone Financial, Inc. (NASDAQ:WSBF – Get Rating) was the target of strong short-term interest growth in February. As of February 15, there was short interest totaling 226,500 shares, a growth of 34.9% from the total of 167,900 shares as of January 31. Approximately 1.1% of the company’s shares are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 92,800 shares, the day-to-cover ratio is currently 2.4 days.

Shares of NASDAQ WSBF opened at $19.86 on Monday. The stock has a market capitalization of $481.23 million, a P/E ratio of 6.73 and a beta of 0.31. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $20.62. Waterstone Financial has a one-year low of $18.70 and a one-year high of $22.74. The company has a quick ratio of 1.26, a current ratio of 1.52 and a debt ratio of 1.07.

Waterstone Financial (NASDAQ:WSBF – Get Rating) last released its quarterly results on Thursday, January 27. The savings and loan company reported EPS of $0.53 for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.48 by $0.05. Waterstone Financial had a return on equity of 16.27% and a net margin of 25.92%. On average, equity research analysts expect Waterstone Financial to post EPS of 1.47 for the current fiscal year.

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The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, February 1. Shareholders of record on Monday, January 10 received a dividend of $0.70. This is an increase from Waterstone Financial’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.20. The ex-dividend date was Friday, January 7. This represents an annualized dividend of $2.80 and a dividend yield of 14.10%. Waterstone Financial’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 27.12%.

Several large investors have recently increased or reduced their stake in WSBF. The New York State Teachers’ Retirement System bought a new stake in Waterstone Financial stock in the third quarter, valued at around $37,000. Citigroup Inc. increased its position in shares of Waterstone Financial by 225.9% during the third quarter. Citigroup Inc. now owns 4,664 shares of the savings and loan company worth $96,000 after buying 3,233 more shares last quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co NY increased its position in Waterstone Financial shares by 71,300.0% during the second quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co NY now owns 5,712 shares of the savings and loan company worth $112,000 after purchasing an additional 5,704 shares in the last quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA increased its position in Waterstone Financial shares by 109.3% in the third quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 7,056 shares in the savings and loan company worth $145,000 after buying 3,684 additional shares last quarter. Finally, MetLife Investment Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Waterstone Financial by 57.4% in the 2nd quarter. MetLife Investment Management LLC now owns 8,351 shares of the savings and loan company worth $164,000 after acquiring 3,044 additional shares in the last quarter. 56.85% of the shares are currently held by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Separately, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Waterstone Financial from a “Strong Sell” rating to a “Hold” rating in a Wednesday, February 16 research report.

Waterstone Financial Company Profile (Get a rating)

Waterstone Financial, Inc operates as a loan holding company, which provides core lending activities. The Company operates through the following segments: Community Banking and Mortgage Banking. The Community Banking segment provides personal and business banking products and services to customers primarily in southeast Wisconsin.

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