Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Graco (GGG) to Sell

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Graco (NYSE:GGG) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note published on Wednesday, December 27th.

According to Zacks, “Graco Inc., together with its subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, and markets systems and equipment used to move, measure, control, dispense, and spray fluid and powder materials worldwide. It operates through three segments: Industrial, Process, and Contractor. The Industrial segment offers proportioning systems that are used to spray polyurethane foam and polyurea coatings; vapor-abrasive blasting equipment; composite materials; and gel coat equipment, chop and wet-out systems, resin transfer molding systems, and applicators etc. The Process segment offers pumps that move chemicals, water, wastewater, petroleum, food, and other fluids; pressure valves used in the oil and natural gas industry, other industrial processes, and research facilities etc. The Contractor segment offers sprayers that apply paint and texture to walls, other structures, and ceilings; and highly viscous coatings to roofs, as well as markings on roads, parking lots, athletic fields, and floors. “

GGG has been the subject of several other research reports. B. Riley reiterated a neutral rating on shares of Graco in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. Robert W. Baird reiterated a hold rating and issued a $45.00 price objective on shares of Graco in a research note on Friday, October 27th. KeyCorp restated a hold rating on shares of Graco in a research note on Friday, October 20th. FBR & Co set a $46.67 target price on Graco and gave the stock a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, October 26th. Finally, SunTrust Banks restated a hold rating and set a $42.67 target price on shares of Graco in a research note on Friday, October 27th. Thirteen research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, The stock presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $41.67.

Graco (NYSE:GGG) opened at $46.92 on Wednesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.31, a current ratio of 2.23 and a quick ratio of 1.46. The stock has a market capitalization of $2,640.00, a PE ratio of 75.68, a PEG ratio of 2.80 and a beta of 1.24. Graco has a 52 week low of $28.39 and a 52 week high of $47.44.

Graco (NYSE:GGG) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 25th. The industrial products company reported $0.38 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.35 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $379.81 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $356.30 million. Graco had a return on equity of 42.05% and a net margin of 7.72%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 16.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.32 EPS. sell-side analysts expect that Graco will post 1.45 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, February 7th. Shareholders of record on Monday, January 22nd will be given a dividend of $0.3975 per share. This is a positive change from Graco’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.36. The ex-dividend date is Friday, January 19th. This represents a $1.59 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.39%. Graco’s payout ratio is 77.42%.

In other news, VP Karen Park Gallivan sold 27,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, January 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $46.67, for a total value of $1,260,090.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 72,305 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,374,474.35. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, insider Daniel Stolyarov sold 500,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $0.11, for a total value of $55,000.00. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 734,752 shares of company stock worth $18,245,690. 5.70% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Advisors Asset Management Inc. grew its holdings in Graco by 106.1% during the second quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. now owns 1,123 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $123,000 after acquiring an additional 578 shares during the period. Acrospire Investment Management LLC grew its holdings in Graco by 200.0% during the second quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 1,200 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $131,000 after acquiring an additional 800 shares during the period. Fiduciary Trust Co. acquired a new position in Graco during the second quarter worth $180,000. Hexavest Inc. grew its holdings in Graco by 200.0% during the fourth quarter. Hexavest Inc. now owns 4,200 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $190,000 after acquiring an additional 2,800 shares during the period. Finally, Parallax Volatility Advisers L.P. grew its holdings in Graco by 127.0% during the second quarter. Parallax Volatility Advisers L.P. now owns 1,918 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $210,000 after acquiring an additional 1,073 shares during the period. 28.75% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Graco

Graco Inc designs, manufactures and markets systems and equipment used to move, measure, control, dispense and spray fluid and powder materials. The Company specializes in equipment for applications that involve materials with viscosities, materials with abrasive or corrosive properties, and multiple-component materials that require ratio control.

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