American Capital Agency Corp. (NASDAQ:AGNC) shares hit a new 52-week high on Wednesday . The stock traded as high as $20.10 and last traded at $19.99, with a volume of 1,572,328 shares trading hands. The stock had previously closed at $20.01.

A number of research firms have recently commented on AGNC. Wunderlich raised shares of American Capital Agency Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their price objective for the company from $19.50 to $23.00 in a research note on Monday, May 23rd. Maxim Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $22.00 price objective (down previously from $23.00) on shares of American Capital Agency Corp. in a research note on Wednesday, April 27th. Nomura downgraded shares of American Capital Agency Corp. to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, July 9th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of American Capital Agency Corp. from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 11th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $20.00 price objective on shares of American Capital Agency Corp. in a research note on Friday, July 29th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $20.48.

The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $19.52 and a 200-day moving average price of $18.69. The company’s market capitalization is $6.61 billion.

American Capital Agency Corp. (NASDAQ:AGNC) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 27th. The real estate investment trust reported $0.73 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.51 by $0.22. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.60 earnings per share.

The firm also recently disclosed a aug 16 dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 9th. Investors of record on Wednesday, August 31st will be paid a $0.18 dividend. This represents a yield of 11.01%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, August 29th.

In related news, Director Morris A. Davis sold 3,323 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $19.00, for a total value of $63,137.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 13,885 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $263,815. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Bernice Bell sold 9,504 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $19.55, for a total value of $185,803.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of large investors have made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of American Capital Agency Corp. by 2.4% in the fourth quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 23,016,143 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $399,100,000 after buying an additional 531,556 shares in the last quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA increased its stake in shares of American Capital Agency Corp. by 7.1% in the fourth quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 964,566 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $16,726,000 after buying an additional 64,020 shares in the last quarter. Mizuho Trust & Banking Co. Ltd. increased its stake in shares of American Capital Agency Corp. by 0.9% in the fourth quarter. Mizuho Trust & Banking Co. Ltd. now owns 525,081 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $9,136,000 after buying an additional 4,824 shares in the last quarter. State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D increased its stake in shares of American Capital Agency Corp. by 114.7% in the fourth quarter. State of New Jersey Common Pension Fund D now owns 483,000 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $8,375,000 after buying an additional 258,000 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK increased its stake in shares of American Capital Agency Corp. by 3.6% in the fourth quarter. Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK now owns 419,979 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $8,038,000 after buying an additional 14,478 shares in the last quarter.

American Capital Agency Corp. is a real estate investment trust (REIT). The Company primarily invests on a leveraged basis in agency mortgage-backed securities (agency MBS). The Company’s investments consist of residential mortgage pass-through securities and collateralized mortgage obligations (CMOs) for which the principal and interest payments are guaranteed by a government-sponsored enterprise, such as the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), or by the United States Government agency, such as the Government National Mortgage Association (Ginnie Mae) (collectively, GSEs).

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