Welltower Inc. (NYSE:HCN) shares dropped 2% during mid-day trading on Thursday . The company traded as low as $77.30 and last traded at $77.34, with a volume of 1,271,959 shares. The stock had previously closed at $78.90.

HCN has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Morgan Stanley restated a “buy” rating on shares of Welltower in a research report on Tuesday, April 19th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Welltower from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, April 20th. BMO Capital Markets restated a “sell” rating on shares of Welltower in a research report on Tuesday, May 3rd. Wells Fargo & Co. restated a “buy” rating on shares of Welltower in a research report on Tuesday, May 3rd. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus raised their price target on shares of Welltower from $73.00 to $76.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 4th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have issued a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $71.00.

The firm has a market cap of $27.83 billion and a P/E ratio of 42.07. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $76.82 and a 200 day moving average of $69.83.

Welltower (NYSE:HCN) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, August 2nd. The real estate investment trust reported $1.15 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.14 by $0.01. The firm earned $1.08 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.04 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.09 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts expect that Welltower Inc. will post $4.57 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, August 22nd. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, August 9th will be issued a $0.86 dividend. This represents a $3.44 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.42%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, August 5th.

In other news, EVP Erin C. Ibele sold 1,955 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $73.74, for a total value of $144,161.70. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 63,256 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,664,497.44. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, EVP Scott M. Brinker sold 18,424 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $76.63, for a total transaction of $1,411,831.12. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 111,756 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,563,862.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of hedge funds and institutional investors recently modified their holdings of HCN. Eaton Vance Management increased its position in shares of Welltower by 24.5% in the fourth quarter. Eaton Vance Management now owns 19,070 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $1,297,000 after buying an additional 3,754 shares during the period. Bridgewater Associates LP increased its position in shares of Welltower by 276.1% in the fourth quarter. Bridgewater Associates LP now owns 34,871 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $2,372,000 after buying an additional 25,600 shares during the period. I.G. Investment Management LTD. increased its position in shares of Welltower by 63.8% in the fourth quarter. I.G. Investment Management LTD. now owns 42,476 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $2,890,000 after buying an additional 16,538 shares during the period. Utah Retirement Systems increased its position in shares of Welltower by 1.6% in the fourth quarter. Utah Retirement Systems now owns 74,716 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $5,082,000 after buying an additional 1,200 shares during the period. Finally, Stephens Inc. AR increased its position in shares of Welltower by 7.5% in the fourth quarter. Stephens Inc. AR now owns 104,087 shares of the real estate investment trust’s stock valued at $7,081,000 after buying an additional 7,256 shares during the period.

Welltower Inc, formerly Health Care REIT, Inc, is a provider of healthcare infrastructure. The Company operates through three segments: triple-net, which includes independent living facilities, independent supportive living facilities (Canada), continuing care retirement communities, assisted living facilities, care homes with and without nursing (United Kingdom), Alzheimer’s/dementia care facilities, long-term/post-acute care facilities and hospitals; seniors housing operating, which includes a range of facility types, including independent living facilities and independent supportive living facilities, assisted living facilities, care homes and Alzheimer’s/dementia care facilities, and outpatient medical, which includes outpatient medical buildings.

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