Diageo plc (NYSE:DEO) was the target of a significant increase in short interest in the month of October. As of October 31st, there was short interest totalling 478,500 shares, an increase of 20.7% from the September 30th total of 396,600 shares. Approximately 0.1% of the company’s shares are short sold. Based on an average trading volume of 370,500 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 1.3 days.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Morgan Stanley increased its stake in Diageo by 1.2% in the 2nd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 2,973,816 shares of the company’s stock worth $512,447,000 after buying an additional 34,529 shares during the period. Charles Schwab Investment Advisory Inc. increased its stake in Diageo by 1.1% in the 2nd quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Advisory Inc. now owns 2,180,203 shares of the company’s stock worth $375,693,000 after buying an additional 23,085 shares during the period. Thoroughbred Financial Services LLC increased its stake in Diageo by 17,346.3% in the 2nd quarter. Thoroughbred Financial Services LLC now owns 1,660,188 shares of the company’s stock worth $166,019,000 after buying an additional 1,650,672 shares during the period. Schafer Cullen Capital Management Inc increased its stake in Diageo by 24.5% in the 2nd quarter. Schafer Cullen Capital Management Inc now owns 1,175,258 shares of the company’s stock worth $200,099,000 after buying an additional 231,125 shares during the period. Finally, Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its stake in Diageo by 2.1% in the 2nd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 935,760 shares of the company’s stock worth $161,250,000 after buying an additional 19,229 shares during the period. 9.47% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

DEO has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. Sanford C. Bernstein raised shares of Diageo from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 10th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Diageo from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $171.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Monday, November 4th. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Diageo from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 2nd. Societe Generale downgraded shares of Diageo from a “buy” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, September 5th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Morgan Stanley reissued an “overweight” rating on shares of Diageo in a research note on Thursday, October 24th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $171.00.

Shares of DEO traded up $0.56 during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $160.92. The stock had a trading volume of 207,769 shares, compared to its average volume of 362,317. Diageo has a 1 year low of $137.24 and a 1 year high of $176.22. The firm has a market cap of $104.27 billion, a PE ratio of 23.84, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.78 and a beta of 0.45. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.06, a current ratio of 1.34 and a quick ratio of 0.56. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $161.77 and its 200 day moving average is $167.04.

About Diageo

Diageo plc, together with its subsidiaries, produces, markets, and sells alcoholic beverages worldwide. The company offers a collection of brands across spirits, beer, cider, and wine categories. Its brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, J&B, Buchanan's and Windsor whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Bundaberg, McDowell's No.

See Also: Back-End Load

Receive News & Ratings for Diageo Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Diageo and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.