Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Cousins Properties Inc. (NYSE:CUZ) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note issued to investors on Friday.
According to Zacks, “Cousins Properties is facing a pressure on top line growth. In fact, during the third quarter, rental property revenues were down 3.5% year over year. Although funds from operations (FFO) per share was in line with expectations in the quarter, the figure was 8.3% below the year ago period tally. Notably, in October, the company closed the merger with Parkway Properties and spun-off the Houston-based assets of the combined company into a publicly-traded REIT. This move is a strategic fit as it allowed the company to not only boost its portfolio with premium properties, but also exit the Houston office market crippled by the decline in oil prices. But, in addition to the top line pressure, hike in interest rate remain its concern. Also, tough competition in the industry affects its ability to attract and retain tenants at relatively higher rents than its competitors.”
Several other analysts have also weighed in on the stock. Stifel Nicolaus upgraded shares of Cousins Properties from a sell rating to a hold rating and lowered their target price for the company from $9.50 to $8.00 in a research note on Monday, October 17th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Robert W. Baird downgraded shares of Cousins Properties from an outperform rating to a neutral rating and set a $11.00 price target for the company. in a report on Wednesday, August 17th.
Cousins Properties (NYSE:CUZ) opened at 8.04 on Friday. Cousins Properties has a 12-month low of $7.09 and a 12-month high of $11.40. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $7.73 and its 200 day moving average is $9.91. The stock has a market capitalization of $3.16 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.33 and a beta of 1.15.
Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Societe Generale purchased a new position in shares of Cousins Properties during the second quarter valued at about $102,000. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC increased its stake in Cousins Properties by 16,922.4% in the second quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 9,873 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $103,000 after buying an additional 9,815 shares during the last quarter. World Asset Management Inc bought a new stake in Cousins Properties during the second quarter valued at $105,000. Paragon Capital Management Ltd bought a new stake in Cousins Properties during the third quarter valued at $108,000. Finally, Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank increased its stake in Cousins Properties by 10.0% in the second quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 10,653 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $111,000 after buying an additional 966 shares during the last quarter. 99.99% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
About Cousins Properties
Cousins Properties Incorporated (Cousins) is a self-administered and self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company focuses on development, acquisition, leasing and property management. The Company’s investment strategy is to purchase Class A office assets or locate opportunistic development or redevelopment projects in its core markets to which it can add value through relationships, capital, or market expertise.