Albemarle Co. (NYSE:ALB)’s share price hit a new 52-week low during mid-day trading on Thursday after Morgan Stanley lowered their price target on the stock from $65.00 to $60.00. Morgan Stanley currently has an underweight rating on the stock. Albemarle traded as low as $62.56 and last traded at $62.63, with a volume of 8978 shares. The stock had previously closed at $64.29.
Other research analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. TheStreet downgraded shares of Albemarle from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research note on Monday, May 20th. Vertical Group reduced their price objective on shares of Albemarle from $58.50 to $39.50 in a research report on Wednesday. SunTrust Banks reduced their price objective on shares of Albemarle from $120.00 to $100.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, August 9th. Nomura boosted their price objective on shares of Albemarle from $70.00 to $71.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, August 9th. Finally, Berenberg Bank set a $75.00 price objective on shares of Albemarle and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $91.84.
A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management LLC raised its position in Albemarle by 3.2% in the 1st quarter. Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management LLC now owns 4,729 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $388,000 after purchasing an additional 146 shares during the last quarter. Gemmer Asset Management LLC raised its position in Albemarle by 71.1% in the 2nd quarter. Gemmer Asset Management LLC now owns 361 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $25,000 after purchasing an additional 150 shares during the last quarter. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in Albemarle by 1.4% in the 1st quarter. Oppenheimer Asset Management Inc. now owns 11,283 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $925,000 after buying an additional 160 shares during the period. Retirement Systems of Alabama increased its stake in Albemarle by 0.3% in the 2nd quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 49,415 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $3,479,000 after buying an additional 171 shares during the period. Finally, Wealthstreet Investment Advisors LLC increased its stake in Albemarle by 3.8% in the 2nd quarter. Wealthstreet Investment Advisors LLC now owns 4,800 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $338,000 after buying an additional 175 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 89.43% of the company’s stock.
The company has a current ratio of 1.45, a quick ratio of 0.87 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.35. The company has a market capitalization of $6.81 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.25, a PEG ratio of 0.72 and a beta of 1.59. The firm’s 50 day simple moving average is $71.02 and its 200-day simple moving average is $76.32.
Albemarle (NYSE:ALB) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 7th. The specialty chemicals company reported $1.55 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.41 by $0.14. The company had revenue of $885.05 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $893.50 million. Albemarle had a net margin of 16.01% and a return on equity of 15.71%. Albemarle’s revenue was up 3.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.36 EPS. As a group, sell-side analysts forecast that Albemarle Co. will post 6.37 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 13th will be paid a $0.3675 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 12th. This represents a $1.47 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.38%. Albemarle’s dividend payout ratio is currently 26.82%.
About Albemarle (NYSE:ALB)
Albemarle Corporation develops, manufactures, and markets engineered specialty chemicals worldwide. Its Lithium segment offers lithium compounds, including lithium carbonate, lithium hydroxide, lithium chloride, and value-added lithium specialties, as well as reagents, such as butyllithium and lithium aluminum hydride for applications in lithium batteries for consumer electronics and electric vehicles, high performance greases, thermoplastic elastomers for car tires, rubber soles, plastic bottles, catalysts for chemical reactions, organic synthesis processes, life science, pharmaceutical, and other markets.
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