W. R. Grace & Co (GRA) Upgraded at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of W. R. Grace & Co (NYSE:GRA) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday. The brokerage currently has $72.00 price target on the specialty chemicals company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “W. R. Grace & Co. produces specialty chemicals. They primarily operate through the following two business segments: Davison Chemicals and Performance Chemicals. Davison Chemicals manufactures catalysts (fluid cracking, hydroprocessing and polyolein) and silica and zeolite absorbents. Performance Chemicals produces specialty construction and building materials, along with container and closure sealants. “

Several other analysts have also weighed in on GRA. ValuEngine lowered W. R. Grace & Co from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Monday, August 20th. KeyCorp lowered their target price on W. R. Grace & Co from $85.00 to $80.00 and set an overweight rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, October 25th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets set a $86.00 target price on W. R. Grace & Co and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Thursday, October 25th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $82.11.

W. R. Grace & Co stock opened at $61.21 on Wednesday. The company has a current ratio of 1.59, a quick ratio of 0.99 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 7.01. The firm has a market capitalization of $4.16 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.00, a PEG ratio of 1.29 and a beta of 1.28. W. R. Grace & Co has a fifty-two week low of $58.48 and a fifty-two week high of $75.59.

W. R. Grace & Co (NYSE:GRA) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, October 24th. The specialty chemicals company reported $1.11 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.02 by $0.09. The company had revenue of $494.90 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $472.23 million. W. R. Grace & Co had a positive return on equity of 98.65% and a negative net margin of 1.31%. W. R. Grace & Co’s revenue was up 15.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.90 earnings per share. Equities analysts predict that W. R. Grace & Co will post 4.01 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, December 5th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, November 14th were given a $0.24 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, November 13th. This represents a $0.96 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.57%. W. R. Grace & Co’s dividend payout ratio is currently 28.24%.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of GRA. Iridian Asset Management LLC CT lifted its position in shares of W. R. Grace & Co by 7.5% in the third quarter. Iridian Asset Management LLC CT now owns 2,640,713 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $188,705,000 after acquiring an additional 184,951 shares in the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. lifted its position in shares of W. R. Grace & Co by 1,262.0% in the third quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 112,529 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $8,042,000 after acquiring an additional 104,267 shares in the last quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC lifted its position in shares of W. R. Grace & Co by 7.4% in the third quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 1,189,940 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $85,033,000 after acquiring an additional 81,487 shares in the last quarter. Marshall Wace LLP lifted its position in shares of W. R. Grace & Co by 337.5% in the third quarter. Marshall Wace LLP now owns 66,029 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $4,718,000 after acquiring an additional 50,936 shares in the last quarter. Finally, LMR Partners LLP purchased a new stake in shares of W. R. Grace & Co in the second quarter valued at $3,103,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 86.96% of the company’s stock.

W. R. Grace & Co Company Profile

W. R. Grace & Co produces and sells specialty chemicals and materials worldwide. It operates through two segments, Grace Catalysts Technologies and Grace Materials Technologies. The Grace Catalysts Technologies segment offers fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) catalysts for the production of transportation fuels, such as gasoline and diesel fuels, and other petroleum-based products; FCC additives; and methanol-to-olefins catalysts for the conversion of methanol into petrochemical feeds, including ethylene and propylene.

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