Highwoods Properties Inc. (NYSE:HIW)’s share price hit a new 52-week high during trading on Thursday . The stock traded as high as $54.09 and last traded at $53.99, with a volume of 187,031 shares trading hands. The stock had previously closed at $53.99.

Several brokerages have recently issued reports on HIW. Capital One Financial Corp. downgraded shares of Highwoods Properties from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Sunday, June 5th. Jefferies Group downgraded shares of Highwoods Properties from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and raised their price objective for the stock from $49.00 to $50.00 in a research note on Friday, April 22nd. Morgan Stanley downgraded shares of Highwoods Properties from an “overweight” rating to an “equal” rating and raised their price objective for the stock from $47.00 to $50.00 in a research note on Thursday, May 12th. Citigroup Inc. raised their price objective on shares of Highwoods Properties from $47.00 to $52.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 7th. Finally, SunTrust Banks Inc. raised their price objective on shares of Highwoods Properties from $48.00 to $53.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Friday, July 15th. Nine equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $49.75.

The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $51.03 and its 200 day moving average price is $46.64. The company has a market capitalization of $5.27 billion and a P/E ratio of 10.13.

Highwoods Properties (NYSE:HIW) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, April 26th. The real estate investment trust reported $0.82 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.79 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $164.90 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $165.74 million. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 13.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.72 EPS. Equities analysts anticipate that Highwoods Properties Inc. will post $3.26 EPS for the current year.

In other news, Director Sherry A. Kellett sold 7,600 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.32, for a total transaction of $359,632.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 13,384 shares in the company, valued at approximately $633,330.88. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, COO Theodore J. Klinck sold 12,397 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.86, for a total value of $605,717.42. Following the sale, the chief operating officer now owns 53,189 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,598,814.54. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Other large investors recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Highwoods Properties by 2.3% in the fourth quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 13,524,895 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $589,685,000 after buying an additional 307,433 shares in the last quarter. Morgan Stanley boosted its stake in shares of Highwoods Properties by 1.2% in the fourth quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 2,633,714 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $114,829,000 after buying an additional 31,871 shares in the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in shares of Highwoods Properties by 1.8% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,211,602 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $52,827,000 after buying an additional 21,420 shares in the last quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc boosted its stake in shares of Highwoods Properties by 11.2% in the fourth quarter. Advantus Capital Management Inc now owns 447,996 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $19,533,000 after buying an additional 45,096 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company MN boosted its stake in shares of Highwoods Properties by 0.3% in the fourth quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 295,554 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock worth $12,886,000 after buying an additional 848 shares in the last quarter.

Highwoods Properties, Inc is a real estate investment trust. The Company provides leasing, management, development, construction and other customer-related services for its properties and for third-parties. The Company is engaged in the business of operation, acquisition and development of real estate properties.

Get Analysts' Upgrades and Downgrades Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of analysts' upgrades, downgrades and new coverage with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.