Office Depot Inc (NASDAQ:ODP) was the recipient of a significant growth in short interest during the month of July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 13,650,745 shares, a growth of 9.8% from the July 14th total of 12,430,895 shares. Currently, 2.7% of the company’s shares are short sold. Based on an average trading volume of 5,423,394 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 2.5 days.

In related news, insider Michael R. Allison sold 66,217 shares of Office Depot stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $5.08, for a total value of $336,382.36. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 763,691 shares in the company, valued at $3,879,550.28. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. 2.43% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of ODP. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Office Depot by 15,485.9% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 54,498,187 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $254,234,000 after buying an additional 54,148,524 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Office Depot by 4.9% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 43,054,694 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $200,850,000 after buying an additional 1,995,980 shares in the last quarter. Fairpointe Capital LLC boosted its stake in shares of Office Depot by 4.4% in the first quarter. Fairpointe Capital LLC now owns 33,020,004 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $154,039,000 after buying an additional 1,383,233 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp boosted its stake in shares of Office Depot by 6.8% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 32,171,818 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $150,082,000 after buying an additional 2,057,459 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in shares of Office Depot by 28.7% in the first quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 28,351,548 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $132,259,000 after buying an additional 6,324,791 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 93.46% of the company’s stock.

A number of research analysts recently weighed in on ODP shares. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Office Depot in a report on Tuesday, May 9th. BidaskClub cut Office Depot from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, July 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Office Depot from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $6.00 target price on the stock in a report on Wednesday, May 10th. Loop Capital reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $5.00 target price on shares of Office Depot in a report on Wednesday, July 12th. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $5.00 target price (down previously from $5.75) on shares of Office Depot in a report on Thursday. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $5.10.

Office Depot (NASDAQ:ODP) opened at 4.45 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $2.30 billion, a PE ratio of 4.02 and a beta of 2.98. Office Depot has a 52 week low of $3.01 and a 52 week high of $6.26. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $5.71 and its 200-day moving average price is $5.04.

Office Depot (NASDAQ:ODP) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 9th. The specialty retailer reported $0.06 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.09 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $2.36 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.44 billion. Office Depot had a return on equity of 15.60% and a net margin of 2.77%. The company’s revenue was down 8.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.06 earnings per share. On average, analysts forecast that Office Depot will post $0.52 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 15th. Investors of record on Friday, August 25th will be issued a $0.025 dividend. This represents a $0.10 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.25%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 23rd. Office Depot’s dividend payout ratio is presently 12.05%.

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About Office Depot

Office Depot, Inc provides a selection of products and services to consumers and businesses of various sizes. The Company’s segments include North American Retail Division and North American Business Solutions Division. The North American Retail Division includes retail stores in the United States, including Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands, which offer office supplies, technology products and solutions, business machines and related supplies, facilities products and office furniture.

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