Paloma Partners Management Co lifted its stake in Ashland Inc. (NYSE:ASH) by 93.4% during the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 6,225 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after acquiring an additional 3,007 shares during the period. Paloma Partners Management Co’s holdings in Ashland were worth $443,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Several other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in ASH. Glenhill Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Ashland in the fourth quarter worth $64,147,000. Luminus Management LLC grew its stake in shares of Ashland by 30.9% in the fourth quarter. Luminus Management LLC now owns 1,884,222 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $134,158,000 after acquiring an additional 444,785 shares during the last quarter. Two Sigma Investments LP grew its stake in shares of Ashland by 27,639.3% in the fourth quarter. Two Sigma Investments LP now owns 358,011 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $25,490,000 after acquiring an additional 359,311 shares during the last quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group grew its stake in shares of Ashland by 30.7% in the third quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 1,463,395 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $95,999,000 after acquiring an additional 344,160 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Ameriprise Financial Inc. grew its stake in shares of Ashland by 32.6% in the third quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 1,117,605 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $73,078,000 after acquiring an additional 274,617 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 93.58% of the company’s stock.
Several equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Ashland from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 3rd. Monness Crespi & Hardt downgraded shares of Ashland from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 31st. Credit Suisse Group upgraded shares of Ashland from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and raised their price objective for the stock from $68.18 to $79.00 in a research note on Friday, March 23rd. Longbow Research upgraded shares of Ashland from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, March 26th. Finally, Seaport Global Securities reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $81.00 price target on shares of Ashland in a research note on Wednesday, January 31st. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Ashland presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $83.44.
In other Ashland news, insider Anne T. Schumann sold 11,733 shares of Ashland stock in a transaction on Wednesday, January 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $73.26, for a total transaction of $859,559.58. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, insider William J. Heitman sold 4,495 shares of Ashland stock in a transaction on Thursday, February 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.31, for a total value of $316,043.45. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 15,152 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,065,337.12. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 26,413 shares of company stock valued at $1,918,021. Company insiders own 1.14% of the company’s stock.
ASH traded up $0.03 during trading on Friday, reaching $69.54. 371,958 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 983,659. Ashland Inc. has a fifty-two week low of $59.80 and a fifty-two week high of $77.16. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.76, a current ratio of 1.96 and a quick ratio of 1.29. The company has a market capitalization of $4,325.52, a P/E ratio of 28.50, a P/E/G ratio of 2.17 and a beta of 1.15.
Ashland (NYSE:ASH) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Monday, January 29th. The basic materials company reported $0.42 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.43 by ($0.01). The business had revenue of $842.00 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $842.05 million. Ashland had a positive return on equity of 7.14% and a negative net margin of 0.08%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.16 EPS. equities research analysts expect that Ashland Inc. will post 3.2 EPS for the current fiscal year.
Ashland declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback plan on Tuesday, March 20th that authorizes the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the basic materials company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are typically an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.
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Ashland Global Holdings Inc provides specialty chemical solutions worldwide. Its Specialty Ingredients segment provides products, technologies, and resources for solving formulation and product-performance challenges. It offers solutions using natural, synthetic, and semisynthetic polymers derived from plant and seed extract, cellulose ethers, vinyl pyrrolidones, and acrylic polymers, as well as polyester and polyurethane-based adhesives.
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