Financial Stocks Finding Little Traction Today; CommonWealth REIT Slips After Shareholder Majority Votes to Oust Board
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Financial stocks were moderately lower with the NYSE Financial Sector Index sliding 0.3% and the S&P Financial 100 Index declining about 0.1%.
In company news, CommonWealth REIT ( CWH ) fell Wednesday after shareholders owning over 81% of the company's outstanding stock voted yesterday to approve a proposal to remove the entire Board of Trustees at the real estate investment trust.
The vote was announced by Related Fund Management and Corvex Management, a pair of activist hedge funds that own a combined 9.6% of CWH shares. Billionaire investor Sam Zell, along with longtime colleague David Hefland also are part of the consortium trying to wrestle control of the $3.6 billion REIT.
Corvex and Related have argued that Adam and Barry Portnoy, a father-son team that effectively control CommonWealth through an external management company, have run the company largely for their own benefit. The dispute has largely played out in arbitration over the past year before moving to a shareholder vote in recent weeks. CWH shares were down 1.6% at $26.75 apiece in recent trade, just 5 cents off their intra-day low. The stock has a 52-week range of $19.55 to $27.94 a share.
CWH were down 1.6% at $26.75 apiece in recent trade, just 5 cents off its session low. The stock has a 52-week range of $19.55 to $27.94 a share.
In other sector news,
(+) JPM, (+0.1%) Sells its physical commodities business to Swiss trade house Mercuria for approximately $3.5 billion, according to Reuters. The bank said it sees no material impact on earnings as a result of the deal.
(-) DX, (-0.9%) Mortgage REIT trims quarterly dividend by $0.02 per share - or 7.4% - to $0.25 per share, payable April 30 to shareholders of record on April 4.