Masco Sees Unusually High Options Volume (NYSE:MAS)

Masco Corp (NYSE:MAS) was the recipient of some unusual options trading activity on Wednesday. Traders acquired 7,161 call options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 1,037% compared to the average daily volume of 630 call options.

Shares of Masco (NYSE:MAS) traded up $1.43 on Friday, reaching $42.13. 5,990,000 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 3,170,270. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 16.87, a quick ratio of 1.43 and a current ratio of 1.97. Masco has a 1 year low of $32.88 and a 1 year high of $46.44. The company has a market capitalization of $13,203.16, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.53, a P/E/G ratio of 1.05 and a beta of 1.49.

Masco (NYSE:MAS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 8th. The construction company reported $0.44 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.43 by $0.01. Masco had a net margin of 6.97% and a return on equity of 1,000.81%. The firm had revenue of $1.87 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.84 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.33 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 6.5% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts forecast that Masco will post 2.44 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, February 12th. Shareholders of record on Friday, January 12th will be paid a $0.105 dividend. This represents a $0.42 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.00%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, January 11th. Masco’s payout ratio is currently 25.45%.

MAS has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. Robert W. Baird lifted their price objective on shares of Masco from $42.00 to $44.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 25th. Citigroup lifted their price objective on shares of Masco from $40.00 to $43.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 25th. Royal Bank of Canada set a $46.00 price objective on shares of Masco and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday. FBR & Co reissued a “buy” rating and set a $46.00 price objective (up previously from $43.00) on shares of Masco in a research note on Wednesday, October 25th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Masco from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 26th. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $44.07.

In other news, Director Lokeren Mary Ann Van sold 16,850 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.85, for a total value of $654,622.50. Following the transaction, the director now owns 47,909 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,861,264.65. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP Renee Straber sold 2,574 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $42.55, for a total transaction of $109,523.70. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 65,423 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,783,748.65. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. First Personal Financial Services acquired a new stake in shares of Masco in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $100,000. Mckinley Capital Management LLC Delaware acquired a new stake in shares of Masco in the second quarter valued at approximately $101,000. YorkBridge Wealth Partners LLC raised its holdings in shares of Masco by 4.6% in the second quarter. YorkBridge Wealth Partners LLC now owns 2,895 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $110,000 after purchasing an additional 127 shares during the last quarter. Vestpro Financial Partners Inc. dba CPF Texas acquired a new stake in shares of Masco in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $114,000. Finally, Advisory Services Network LLC raised its holdings in shares of Masco by 27.6% in the second quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 3,532 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $135,000 after purchasing an additional 763 shares during the last quarter. 89.90% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Masco

Masco Corporation designs, manufactures, markets and distributes branded home improvement and building products. The Company operates through four business segments: Plumbing Products, Decorative Architectural Products, Cabinetry Products, and Windows and Other Specialty Products. The Company’s portfolio of brands includes BEHR paint; DELTA and HANSGROHE faucets, bath and shower fixtures; KRAFTMAID and MERILLAT cabinets; MILGARD windows and doors, and HOT SPRING spas.

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