Juniper Networks Sees Unusually Large Options Volume (JNPR)

Juniper Networks, Inc. (NYSE:JNPR) saw some unusual options trading activity on Tuesday. Stock investors acquired 6,976 call options on the company. This is an increase of 941% compared to the typical volume of 670 call options.

JNPR opened at $26.73 on Thursday. Juniper Networks has a 1-year low of $23.61 and a 1-year high of $30.80. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.37, a current ratio of 2.49 and a quick ratio of 2.47. The company has a market capitalization of $9.23 billion, a PE ratio of 19.65, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.17 and a beta of 0.82.

Juniper Networks (NYSE:JNPR) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, January 29th. The network equipment provider reported $0.59 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.57 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $1.18 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.22 billion. Juniper Networks had a return on equity of 10.47% and a net margin of 12.20%. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that Juniper Networks will post 1.37 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 22nd. Investors of record on Friday, March 1st will be given a $0.19 dividend. This is a boost from Juniper Networks’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.18. This represents a $0.76 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.84%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, February 28th. Juniper Networks’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 52.94%.

A number of research firms recently commented on JNPR. Wolfe Research started coverage on Juniper Networks in a report on Tuesday, December 11th. They issued an “outperform” rating on the stock. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $27.00 target price on shares of Juniper Networks in a research report on Tuesday, October 23rd. ValuEngine cut Juniper Networks from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 30th. Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “sell” rating and set a $21.00 target price on shares of Juniper Networks in a research report on Thursday, December 20th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut Juniper Networks from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, February 4th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $27.86.

In related news, CFO Kenneth Bradley Miller sold 7,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $26.00, for a total value of $182,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, EVP Bikash Koley sold 7,101 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $25.00, for a total value of $177,525.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 49,709 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,242,725. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 24,801 shares of company stock valued at $638,581 over the last three months. 1.40% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Geode Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Juniper Networks by 8.0% in the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 6,026,296 shares of the network equipment provider’s stock worth $161,957,000 after purchasing an additional 444,273 shares during the period. Neuburgh Advisers LLC lifted its position in Juniper Networks by 7.1% in the fourth quarter. Neuburgh Advisers LLC now owns 250,008 shares of the network equipment provider’s stock worth $6,728,000 after purchasing an additional 16,588 shares during the period. Gideon Capital Advisors Inc. bought a new position in Juniper Networks in the fourth quarter worth $763,000. Flinton Capital Management LLC raised its stake in Juniper Networks by 7.1% during the fourth quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 386,376 shares of the network equipment provider’s stock worth $10,398,000 after acquiring an additional 25,636 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BRITISH COLUMBIA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Corp raised its stake in Juniper Networks by 34.5% during the fourth quarter. BRITISH COLUMBIA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Corp now owns 152,026 shares of the network equipment provider’s stock worth $4,091,000 after acquiring an additional 38,970 shares in the last quarter. 91.97% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Juniper Networks Company Profile

Juniper Networks, Inc designs, develops, and sells network products and services worldwide. The company offers various routing products, such as ACX series universal access routers to deploy new high-bandwidth services; MX series Ethernet routers that functions as a universal edge platform; PTX series packet transport routers; cloud customer premises equipment; and NorthStar controllers.

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