Verso Corp (NYSE:VRS) has been assigned an average broker rating score of 1.00 (Strong Buy) from the two brokers that provide coverage for the stock, Zacks Investment Research reports. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a strong buy rating.

Brokerages have set a 12 month consensus price objective of $29.00 for the company and are predicting that the company will post ($0.34) earnings per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Zacks has also given Verso an industry rank of 171 out of 254 based on the ratings given to related companies.

A number of brokerages recently commented on VRS. BWS Financial dropped their price target on Verso from $50.00 to $35.00 and set a “strong-buy” rating for the company in a research note on Monday, March 16th. B. Riley increased their price target on Verso from $22.00 to $23.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 12th. ValuEngine raised Verso from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 12th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered Verso from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, May 22nd.

Shares of NYSE:VRS traded up $0.23 during trading on Friday, hitting $14.78. 35,479 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 250,692. Verso has a 52-week low of $9.61 and a 52-week high of $19.49. The business’s 50-day simple moving average is $13.15 and its 200 day simple moving average is $15.56. The company has a market cap of $500.50 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 4.64 and a beta of 1.99.

Verso (NYSE:VRS) last released its earnings results on Monday, May 11th. The basic materials company reported $1.52 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.38 by $1.14. Verso had a return on equity of 4.50% and a net margin of 5.01%. The firm had revenue of $471.00 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $493.11 million. Research analysts expect that Verso will post -0.87 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 29th. Stockholders of record on Monday, June 15th will be paid a $0.10 dividend. This represents a $0.40 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.71%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, June 12th.

In related news, Director Jeffrey E. Kirt acquired 10,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, March 12th. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $11.45 per share, with a total value of $114,500.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CEO John Adam St. sold 18,066 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $13.89, for a total value of $250,936.74. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.45% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of VRS. New York State Teachers Retirement System increased its holdings in shares of Verso by 157.4% in the 4th quarter. New York State Teachers Retirement System now owns 7,978 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $144,000 after acquiring an additional 4,878 shares during the period. California Public Employees Retirement System lifted its position in Verso by 155.7% during the 4th quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 45,491 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $820,000 after acquiring an additional 27,700 shares during the period. SG Americas Securities LLC acquired a new stake in Verso during the 4th quarter worth about $115,000. Clear Harbor Asset Management LLC lifted its position in Verso by 5.9% during the 4th quarter. Clear Harbor Asset Management LLC now owns 39,700 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $716,000 after acquiring an additional 2,200 shares during the period. Finally, Russell Investments Group Ltd. lifted its holdings in shares of Verso by 15.7% in the 4th quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 99,807 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,789,000 after buying an additional 13,566 shares during the period. 83.69% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Verso

Verso Corporation produces and sells coated papers in North America. It operates through two segments, Paper and Pulp. The company offers coated freesheet and coated groundwood, specialty, packaging, inkjet and digital, supercalendered, and uncoated freesheet papers; and bleached and unbleached market kraft pulp to manufacture printing, writing, and tissue products.

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