Golar LNG Ltd. (NASDAQ:GLNG) shares were down 4.5% on Thursday . The company traded as low as $16.84 and last traded at $16.84, with a volume of 1,492,304 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $17.64.

A number of research analysts recently weighed in on GLNG shares. DNB Markets downgraded Golar LNG from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, April 29th. ABN Amro downgraded Golar LNG from a “buy” rating to a “sell” rating and dropped their price target for the stock from $38.00 to $10.00 in a research report on Thursday, June 30th. Sanford C. Bernstein downgraded Golar LNG from a “buy” rating to a “sell” rating and dropped their price target for the stock from $38.00 to $10.00 in a research report on Thursday, June 30th. Credit Suisse Group AG raised Golar LNG from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $20.00 to $30.00 in a research report on Monday, May 9th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research downgraded Golar LNG from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 22nd. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and eleven have given a buy rating to the stock. Golar LNG presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $34.80.

The company’s 50 day moving average is $16.36 and its 200 day moving average is $17.37. The company’s market cap is $1.58 billion.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, July 7th. Investors of record on Wednesday, June 15th were given a dividend of $0.05 per share. The ex-dividend date was Monday, June 13th. This represents a $0.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.18%.

Other hedge funds and institutional investors recently modified their holdings of the company. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System boosted its position in shares of Golar LNG by 9.8% in the fourth quarter. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System now owns 100,683 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,590,000 after buying an additional 8,948 shares during the period. Trexquant Investment LP bought a new position in shares of Golar LNG during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $1,924,000. California State Teachers Retirement System boosted its position in shares of Golar LNG by 1.7% in the fourth quarter. California State Teachers Retirement System now owns 171,975 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,715,000 after buying an additional 2,917 shares during the period. New York State Common Retirement Fund boosted its position in shares of Golar LNG by 16.5% in the fourth quarter. New York State Common Retirement Fund now owns 470,600 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,431,000 after buying an additional 66,500 shares during the period. Finally, BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA boosted its position in shares of Golar LNG by 5,703.9% in the fourth quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 886,898 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,004,000 after buying an additional 871,617 shares during the period.

Golar LNG Limited (Golar) is the owner and operator of liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers and floating storage regasification units (FSRUs). As of March 31, 2010, Golar had a fleet of 13 vessels, 10 LNG carriers, three FSRUs and a 50% interest in a further LNG carrier. On June 22, 2009, the Company formed a wholly owned subsidiary, Golar LNG Energy Limited (Golar Energy).

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