May 08, 2012 at 08:39 AM EDT
Jefferies Boosts Target for Mid America Apartment Communities (MAA)

Apartment-based REIT Mid America Apartment Communities Inc. (MAA) on Tuesday caught some further bullish commentary from analysts at Jefferies & Co.

The firm maintained its “Buy” rating on MAA and lifted its price target from $74 to $77, suggesting an 11% upside to the stock’s Wednesday closing price of $69.07.

A Jefferies analyst commented, “We are revising our reported 2012/2013E FFO/sh to $4.43/$4.84, from $4.48/$4.90, to reflect: (i) 1Q12 results; (ii) revised acquisition, disposition, and financing assumptions; and (iii) updated rental rate growth and occupancy forecasts. Our 2012E reported FFO/sh of $4.43 compares to guidance range of $4.28-$4.48 and consensus estimate of $4.40. Our 2012/2013E core FFO/sh (i.e., reported FFO/sh less acquisition costs) are now $4.49/$4.87, from $4.56/$4.93. As a result of our revisions and updates to our DDM, we are raising our PT on MAA shares to $77, from $74.”

Mid America Apartment Communities shares were mostly flat in premarket trading Tuesday.

The Bottom Line
Shares of Mid American Apartment Communities (MAA) have a 3.84% dividend yield, based on last night’s closing stock price of $69.07. The stock has technical support in the $64 price area. If the stock can firm up, we see overhead resistance around the all-time high price levels of $72-$73 a share.

Mid America Apartment Communities Inc. (MAA) is not recommended at this time, holding a Dividend.com DARS™ Rating of 3.3 out of 5 stars.

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks, as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here.

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