Shares of NetApp Inc. (NASDAQ:NTAP) gapped up prior to trading on Thursday . The stock had previously closed at $27.60, but opened at $27.62. NetApp shares last traded at $28.15, with a volume of 1,477,853 shares changing hands.

Several analysts recently weighed in on NTAP shares. Royal Bank Of Canada cut their price target on shares of NetApp from $29.00 to $26.00 and set a “sector perform” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, May 24th. Pacific Crest reiterated a “sector weight” rating on shares of NetApp in a report on Thursday, May 26th. Robert W. Baird reiterated a “neutral” rating and issued a $26.00 price target on shares of NetApp in a report on Monday, June 27th. Credit Suisse Group AG reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of NetApp in a report on Thursday, May 19th. Finally, Longbow Research reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of NetApp in a report on Monday, April 18th. Ten equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-three have assigned a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $26.31.

The company’s 50-day moving average price is $25.68 and its 200-day moving average price is $24.92. The stock has a market capitalization of $7.97 billion and a PE ratio of 36.95.

NetApp (NASDAQ:NTAP) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 25th. The data storage provider reported $0.55 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.03. The firm earned $1.38 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.40 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.65 EPS. The firm’s revenue was down 10.4% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts predict that NetApp Inc. will post $2.22 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, July 27th. Stockholders of record on Monday, July 18th were paid a $0.19 dividend. This represents a $0.76 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.67%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, July 14th. This is a positive change from NetApp’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.18.

In related news, SVP Matthew K. Fawcett sold 17,808 shares of NetApp stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, June 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $24.98, for a total transaction of $444,843.84. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 14,715 shares in the company, valued at $367,580.70. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, VP Joel D. Reich sold 5,000 shares of NetApp stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, June 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.96, for a total value of $129,800.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 2,730 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $70,870.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of hedge funds and institutional investors recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Morgan Stanley boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 346.5% in the fourth quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 1,447,573 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $38,403,000 after buying an additional 1,123,380 shares in the last quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 142.8% in the fourth quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 1,098,397 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $29,140,000 after buying an additional 646,018 shares in the last quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management CO. LTD. boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 2.5% in the fourth quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management CO. LTD. now owns 39,700 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $1,053,000 after buying an additional 951 shares in the last quarter. Andra AP fonden boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 30.9% in the fourth quarter. Andra AP fonden now owns 111,100 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $2,947,000 after buying an additional 26,200 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bridgewater Associates LP boosted its position in shares of NetApp by 82.4% in the fourth quarter. Bridgewater Associates LP now owns 819,846 shares of the data storage provider’s stock valued at $21,751,000 after buying an additional 370,273 shares in the last quarter.

NetApp, Inc (NetApp) is engaged in providing software, systems and services to manage and store customer data. The Company offers a portfolio of products and services to a range of customer workloads across various data types and deployment models. Its data management solutions enable customers on-premises or in a public cloud resource to control, integrate, move and manage it.

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