Highwoods Properties (NYSE:HIW) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Highwoods have underperformed its industry in the past three months. Further, the stock witnessed the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2018 funds from operations (FFO) per share being revised downward in a week’s time. Notably, significant exposure to office assets amid rising supply as well as persistent space efficiency trends and stiff competition are concerns. Moreover, the company’s assets are concentrated in a few markets that make it vulnerable to the economic and political doldrums in these areas. Rate hikes add to its woes. Nevertheless, the company’s better-than-expected FFO per share for fourth-quarter 2017 indicate growth in same-property net operating income (NOI) and strong leasing metrics. Also, the company’s efforts to fortify its high-quality office asset portfolio in best business districts (BBDs) have the capablity to drive long-term growth.”

Several other research firms have also recently issued reports on HIW. Edward Jones cut Highwoods Properties from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, November 6th. SunTrust Banks set a $52.00 price objective on Highwoods Properties and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 24th. ValuEngine upgraded Highwoods Properties from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, January 4th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus lowered their price objective on Highwoods Properties from $55.00 to $50.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, February 8th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $51.50.

Shares of Highwoods Properties (NYSE:HIW) opened at $42.81 on Tuesday. The company has a quick ratio of 1.40, a current ratio of 1.40 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.91. Highwoods Properties has a twelve month low of $41.83 and a twelve month high of $53.34. The stock has a market capitalization of $4,450.51, a PE ratio of 12.67, a P/E/G ratio of 4.24 and a beta of 0.74.

In related news, Director Sherry A. Kellett sold 2,000 shares of Highwoods Properties stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $50.64, for a total value of $101,280.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 13,744 shares in the company, valued at approximately $695,996.16. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, Director Sherry A. Kellett sold 1,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.70, for a total value of $51,700.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 11,744 shares in the company, valued at $607,164.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.90% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Wealthstreet Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new position in shares of Highwoods Properties during the 4th quarter worth approximately $204,000. Tudor Investment Corp ET AL acquired a new position in shares of Highwoods Properties during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $207,000. Advisor Group Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Highwoods Properties by 470.8% during the 4th quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 4,452 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $227,000 after purchasing an additional 3,672 shares during the last quarter. BlueCrest Capital Management Ltd acquired a new position in shares of Highwoods Properties during the 4th quarter worth approximately $253,000. Finally, Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado boosted its holdings in shares of Highwoods Properties by 74.2% during the 4th quarter. Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado now owns 5,574 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $284,000 after purchasing an additional 2,375 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 96.21% of the company’s stock.

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About Highwoods Properties

Highwoods Properties, Inc is an office real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company’s primary business is the operation, acquisition and development of office properties. The Company’s segments include Office and Other. The Company owns, develops, acquires, leases and manages properties primarily in the best business districts (BBDs) of Atlanta, Greensboro, Memphis, Nashville, Orlando, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, Richmond and Tampa.

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