Morgan Dempsey Capital Management LLC increased its position in Ares Capital Co. (NASDAQ:ARCC) by 3.9% in the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 347,392 shares of the investment management company’s stock after purchasing an additional 12,995 shares during the period. Ares Capital makes up about 2.4% of Morgan Dempsey Capital Management LLC’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 11th largest position. Morgan Dempsey Capital Management LLC’s holdings in Ares Capital were worth $5,954,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in ARCC. Financial Advantage Inc. boosted its holdings in Ares Capital by 0.8% in the 1st quarter. Financial Advantage Inc. now owns 285,221 shares of the investment management company’s stock worth $4,888,000 after buying an additional 2,178 shares during the period. Ipswich Investment Management Co. Inc. boosted its holdings in Ares Capital by 256.9% in the 1st quarter. Ipswich Investment Management Co. Inc. now owns 73,199 shares of the investment management company’s stock worth $1,255,000 after buying an additional 52,689 shares during the period. LGT Capital Partners LTD. boosted its holdings in Ares Capital by 7.0% in the 1st quarter. LGT Capital Partners LTD. now owns 1,830,000 shares of the investment management company’s stock worth $31,366,000 after buying an additional 120,000 shares during the period. Baltimore Washington Financial Advisors Inc. boosted its holdings in Ares Capital by 2.2% in the 4th quarter. Baltimore Washington Financial Advisors Inc. now owns 576,381 shares of the investment management company’s stock worth $8,980,000 after buying an additional 12,413 shares during the period. Finally, Global Strategic Management Inc. bought a new position in Ares Capital in the 4th quarter worth $3,392,000. Institutional investors own 38.19% of the company’s stock.

Shares of ARCC traded down $0.13 during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $17.83. 1,403,026 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,508,084. Ares Capital Co. has a 52 week low of $14.50 and a 52 week high of $18.07. The company has a market capitalization of $7.60 billion, a PE ratio of 10.61 and a beta of 0.65. The company has a quick ratio of 2.47, a current ratio of 2.47 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.84.

Ares Capital (NASDAQ:ARCC) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, April 30th. The investment management company reported $0.48 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.42 by $0.06. The firm had revenue of $373.00 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $337.96 million. Ares Capital had a net margin of 59.58% and a return on equity of 10.12%. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.57 EPS. As a group, sell-side analysts expect that Ares Capital Co. will post 1.79 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a special dividend, which will be paid on Monday, September 30th. Stockholders of record on Monday, September 16th will be given a dividend of $0.02 per share. This represents a dividend yield of 9.04%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, September 13th. Ares Capital’s dividend payout ratio is 95.24%.

Several research analysts have commented on ARCC shares. BidaskClub raised shares of Ares Capital from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Saturday, February 9th. National Securities increased their price objective on shares of Ares Capital from $19.00 to $20.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 13th. JMP Securities increased their price objective on shares of Ares Capital from $19.00 to $19.50 and gave the company a “market outperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 13th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Ares Capital from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $19.00 price objective for the company in a report on Friday, February 15th. Finally, Wedbush set a $20.00 price objective on shares of Ares Capital and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, May 14th. One analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $19.25.

In other Ares Capital news, Director Bates Ann Torre bought 9,725 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 15th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $17.61 per share, for a total transaction of $171,257.25. Following the transaction, the director now owns 24,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $422,640. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Director Steven B. Mckeever bought 5,640 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, May 13th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $17.52 per share, for a total transaction of $98,812.80. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have bought a total of 15,965 shares of company stock worth $280,478 over the last 90 days. Corporate insiders own 0.53% of the company’s stock.

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Ares Capital Company Profile

Ares Capital Corporation is a business development company specializing in acquisition, recapitalization, mezzanine debt, restructurings, rescue financing, and leveraged buyout transactions of middle market companies. It also makes growth capital and general refinancing. It prefers to make investments in companies engaged in the basic and growth manufacturing, business services, consumer products, health care products and services, and information technology service sectors.

Further Reading: Stock Ratings and Recommendations: Understanding Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ares Capital (NASDAQ:ARCC)

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