Sonoco Products Co. (SON) stock slips after being downgraded at Bank of America Corp.

Sonoco Products Co. (NYSE: SON) shares fell in early trading today on lower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a downgraded rating.

Analysts at Bank of America Corp. downgraded shares of Sonoco Products Co. (NYSE: SON) from Neutral to Underperform in a research note to investors today. With a rating of Underperform on the shares, Sonoco Products Co. has a 52-week high of $53.57. As a means of comparison, a number of other analysts have spoken on the stock recently, and Sonoco Products Co. has secured a consensus one-year price target of $49.30, lower than the opening price of $51.95. Considerable and major digressions in the company’s procedures, future outlook or industry can cause downgrades as the analysts consider that the future prospects for the security have diminished from the original recommendation.

Meanwhile, US stock opened lower amid concerns surrounding the U.S. Department of Justice’s probe into Deutsche Bank AG.

The S&P 500 SPX, -0.25% slipped 5 points, or 0.2%, to 2,162.

The Dow industrials DJIA, -0.26% fell 55 points, or 0.3%, to 18,252.

The Nasdaq Composite COMP, -0.11% was off 13 points, or 0.3%, to 5,298

Sonoco Products Co. (NYSE: SON) shares last traded at $51.45, which is a decrease of $1.38 per share or -0.03 compared to the previous closing price. Opening at $51.95, they fluctuated from $51.29 and $52.07 throughout the day.

Sonoco Products Co. (NYSE: SON) now has a market cap of 5.16B.

Sonoco Products Co.Trading Volume

The stock’s average daily volume is 446,662 shares out of a total float 98,042,000 and some 141,609 shares crossed the trading desk yesterday, below the average. Investors often use swings in trading volume to determine heavy volume accumulation or dissemination by institutional investors, so trading volume is likely to increase in the next few days.

However, one day of significant buy side trading is not enough to affirm a trend. So market traders will continue to watch for institutional sponsorship as a cue that financial institutions are moving forward.

Institutional sponsorship just refers to ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

These professional investors retain teams of analysts researching thousands of stocks. Thus, watching their interests is a good way to ensure you are buying the right stocks.

Sonoco Products Co. Moving Averages

A moving average can also act as support or resistance. In an uptrend a 50-day, 100-day or 200-day moving average may act as a support level, as shown in the figure below.

This is because the average acts like a floor (support), so the price bounces up off of it.

In a downtrend a moving average may act as resistance; like a ceiling, the price hits it and then starts to drop again.

Traders can make smarter trades when they follow the activity of professional investors.

Trades for Sonoco Products Co. (NYSE: SON) have ranged from $36.56 – 53.57, and the stock now has a 50-day MA of $51.99 and 200-day MA of $49.41. Today’s last price is 0.04% under the 52 week high of $53.57.

Indeed, earnings growth is among the most important things to look at in regards to stock investing and, accordingly, investors seek companies that have increased their earnings at least 25% or more for 3 consecutive years.

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