Stepan Company (NYSE:SCL) – Equities researchers at KeyCorp cut their FY2017 earnings per share estimates for shares of Stepan in a research note issued to investors on Friday. KeyCorp analyst M. Sison now expects that the basic materials company will post earnings of $4.23 per share for the year, down from their previous estimate of $4.40. KeyCorp has a “Hold” rating on the stock. KeyCorp also issued estimates for Stepan’s Q4 2017 earnings at $0.63 EPS.
Several other brokerages also recently commented on SCL. Wellington Shields downgraded Stepan from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, July 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Stepan from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, September 16th. National Bank Financial upgraded Stepan from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and increased their price target for the company from $27.00 to $35.00 in a report on Wednesday, October 11th. BMO Capital Markets lowered their price target on Stepan from $42.00 to $36.00 in a report on Monday, August 14th. Finally, TD Securities reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $33.00 price target on shares of Stepan in a report on Sunday, September 24th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating, three have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. Stepan currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $36.25.
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Stepan (SCL) opened at 79.07 on Monday. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $84.14 and a 200 day moving average of $83.81. Stepan has a 52 week low of $67.85 and a 52 week high of $92.97. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.78 billion, a P/E ratio of 20.59 and a beta of 1.28.
Stepan (NYSE:SCL) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The basic materials company reported $0.92 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.09 by ($0.17). The firm had revenue of $487.81 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $469.75 million. Stepan had a net margin of 4.81% and a return on equity of 13.98%. Stepan’s revenue for the quarter was up 9.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.06 earnings per share.
Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in SCL. Victory Capital Management Inc. grew its stake in shares of Stepan by 28.8% in the first quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 1,917 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $151,000 after acquiring an additional 429 shares during the last quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. grew its stake in shares of Stepan by 30.9% in the first quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 17,125 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $1,349,000 after acquiring an additional 4,038 shares during the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC grew its stake in shares of Stepan by 1.0% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 63,862 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $5,033,000 after acquiring an additional 610 shares during the last quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC grew its stake in shares of Stepan by 19.4% in the first quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 102,348 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $8,066,000 after acquiring an additional 16,637 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Thrivent Financial For Lutherans grew its stake in shares of Stepan by 6.0% in the first quarter. Thrivent Financial For Lutherans now owns 11,010 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $868,000 after acquiring an additional 620 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 62.17% of the company’s stock.
In other news, Director F Quinn Stepan sold 8,865 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.50, for a total value of $713,632.50. Following the sale, the director now owns 287,962 shares in the company, valued at $23,180,941. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, VP Scott R. Behrens sold 667 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $77.64, for a total transaction of $51,785.88. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 3,266 shares in the company, valued at approximately $253,572.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 29,404 shares of company stock worth $2,343,492. 13.10% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 15th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, November 30th will be paid a $0.225 dividend. This is an increase from Stepan’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.21. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, November 29th. This represents a $0.90 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.14%. Stepan’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 21.24%.
Stepan Company Profile
Stepan Company produces specialty and intermediate chemicals, which are sold to other manufacturers and used in a range of end products. The Company operates through three segments: Surfactants, Polymers and Specialty Products. The Company’s principal markets include manufacturers of cleaning and washing compounds (including detergents, shampoos, fabric softeners, toothpastes and household cleaners), paints, cosmetics, food, beverages, nutritional supplements, agricultural products and plastics.
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