Procter & Gamble (PG) Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note released on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “P&G is known for its strong brand recognition, diversified portfolio, impressive product development capabilities and marketing prowess as well as strong cash flow productivity. The company remains focused on balanced growth through improved product, packaging, and marketing initiatives and productivity cost-savings plan. Earnings estimates for fiscal 2018 have moved north over the last 60 days signaling analysts’ optimism. However, P&G's shares have lost around 14.5% in the last six months, while its industry dipped 10.6%. Slowing market growth, weak volumes and organic sales have been hurting sales. Soft consumer-spending environment in developed markets and uncertainties in emerging countries also add to the worries. That said, P&G is speeding up innovations and investments to counter the softening industry growth.”

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Several other equities analysts also recently weighed in on PG. Deutsche Bank started coverage on Procter & Gamble in a research report on Wednesday, December 13th. They set a buy rating and a $101.00 price target for the company. Wells Fargo reissued a hold rating and set a $88.00 price target on shares of Procter & Gamble in a research report on Sunday, December 17th. Jefferies Group reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $99.00 price objective on shares of Procter & Gamble in a research report on Monday, December 18th. Goldman Sachs raised Procter & Gamble from a sell rating to a neutral rating and set a $77.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Tuesday, January 16th. Finally, SunTrust Banks reaffirmed a hold rating and issued a $90.00 price objective on shares of Procter & Gamble in a research report on Tuesday, January 23rd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating, eight have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. Procter & Gamble has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $86.41.

Procter & Gamble stock opened at $79.28 on Wednesday. The company has a quick ratio of 0.79, a current ratio of 0.94 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.41. The firm has a market cap of $199,865.19, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.22, a P/E/G ratio of 2.49 and a beta of 0.58. Procter & Gamble has a fifty-two week low of $75.81 and a fifty-two week high of $94.67.

Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, January 23rd. The company reported $1.19 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.14 by $0.05. The company had revenue of $17.40 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $17.39 billion. Procter & Gamble had a return on equity of 20.66% and a net margin of 15.34%. Procter & Gamble’s revenue was up 3.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $1.08 earnings per share. research analysts anticipate that Procter & Gamble will post 4.18 EPS for the current year.

In related news, insider Marylynn Fergusonmchugh sold 2,353 shares of Procter & Gamble stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $78.59, for a total value of $184,922.27. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, Vice Chairman Jon R. Moeller sold 3,252 shares of Procter & Gamble stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.59, for a total value of $255,574.68. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 114,011 shares of company stock worth $9,710,976 in the last quarter. 0.35% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Aviva PLC lifted its stake in shares of Procter & Gamble by 1.7% during the second quarter. Aviva PLC now owns 1,814,623 shares of the company’s stock worth $158,162,000 after purchasing an additional 30,897 shares in the last quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. lifted its stake in shares of Procter & Gamble by 1,094.3% during the third quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. now owns 736,699 shares of the company’s stock worth $67,025,000 after purchasing an additional 675,013 shares in the last quarter. Edgestream Partners L.P. lifted its stake in shares of Procter & Gamble by 21.9% during the third quarter. Edgestream Partners L.P. now owns 7,543 shares of the company’s stock worth $686,000 after purchasing an additional 1,356 shares in the last quarter. Asset Dedication LLC acquired a new position in shares of Procter & Gamble during the fourth quarter worth about $1,164,000. Finally, Spectrum Management Group Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Procter & Gamble by 221.4% in the third quarter. Spectrum Management Group Inc. now owns 32,757 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,980,000 after acquiring an additional 22,565 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 60.98% of the company’s stock.

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Procter & Gamble Company Profile

The Procter & Gamble Company is focused on providing branded consumer packaged goods to the consumers across the world. The Company operates through five segments: Beauty; Grooming; Health Care; Fabric & Home Care, and Baby, Feminine & Family Care. The Company sells its products in approximately 180 countries and territories primarily through mass merchandisers, grocery stores, membership club stores, drug stores, department stores, distributors, baby stores, specialty beauty stores, e-commerce, high-frequency stores and pharmacies.

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