Zacks Investment Research Lowers Verso (VRS) to Hold

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Verso (NYSE:VRS) from a strong-buy rating to a hold rating in a report issued on Friday.

According to Zacks, “Verso Corporation is engaged in the paper industry. The Company produces coated freesheet, coated ground wood and uncoated super calendered papers and pulp. It serves to magazine and catalog publishers, commercial printers, specialty retail merchandisers and paper merchants. The company operates primarily in Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Verso Corporation is based in Memphis, United States. “

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Several other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports on the stock. BWS Financial raised their price target on shares of Verso to $30.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Friday, March 9th. B. Riley set a $24.00 price target on shares of Verso and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Friday, March 9th. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Verso from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Friday, February 2nd.

Verso stock opened at $16.86 on Friday. Verso has a 12-month low of $3.17 and a 12-month high of $19.32. The stock has a market cap of $591.94, a price-to-earnings ratio of -22.48 and a beta of 1.35. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.35, a quick ratio of 0.63 and a current ratio of 2.15.

In other Verso news, major shareholder Mudrick Capital Management, L. sold 60,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $17.15, for a total transaction of $1,029,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Insiders have sold a total of 607,573 shares of company stock worth $10,520,392 over the last ninety days. 4.20% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY purchased a new position in shares of Verso during the 4th quarter worth about $171,000. Stone Ridge Asset Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Verso during the 4th quarter worth about $242,000. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC purchased a new position in Verso in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $295,000. Ellington Management Group LLC purchased a new position in Verso in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $367,000. Finally, Jane Street Group LLC purchased a new position in Verso in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $423,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 82.22% of the company’s stock.

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About Verso

Verso Corporation produces and sells coated papers in North America. It operates through two segments, Paper and Pulp. The company offers coated freesheet and coated groundwood, specialty, inkjet and digital, supercalendered, and uncoated freesheet papers; and northern bleached hardwood Kraft pulp to manufacture printing, writing, and specialty paper grades, as well as to manufacture tissue products.

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