Harsco Co. (NYSE:HSC) Sees Large Increase in Short Interest

Harsco Co. (NYSE:HSC) was the target of a large increase in short interest in August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 3,762,000 shares, an increase of 124.8% from the July 31st total of 1,673,500 shares. Currently, 4.7% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 811,500 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 4.6 days.

In other news, SVP Tracey L. Mckenzie acquired 2,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 20th. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $18.99 per share, with a total value of $37,980.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the senior vice president now directly owns 30,949 shares in the company, valued at $587,721.51. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, CFO Peter Francis Minan acquired 2,250 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 2nd. The shares were purchased at an average price of $21.08 per share, for a total transaction of $47,430.00. Following the purchase, the chief financial officer now directly owns 123,252 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,598,152.16. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders bought 30,600 shares of company stock worth $528,703. Company insiders own 1.64% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of HSC. Nuveen Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in Harsco in the second quarter valued at approximately $46,134,000. Polar Asset Management Partners Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Harsco in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $15,668,000. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its holdings in shares of Harsco by 42.0% in the 2nd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,515,082 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $41,574,000 after purchasing an additional 447,970 shares during the last quarter. Kennedy Capital Management Inc. boosted its position in Harsco by 151.8% during the 1st quarter. Kennedy Capital Management Inc. now owns 702,647 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $14,165,000 after purchasing an additional 423,620 shares during the period. Finally, Emerald Advisers LLC boosted its position in Harsco by 3,059.5% during the 2nd quarter. Emerald Advisers LLC now owns 402,864 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $11,055,000 after purchasing an additional 390,113 shares during the period. 85.45% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Harsco stock traded up $1.22 during trading hours on Wednesday, reaching $20.06. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 787,134 shares, compared to its average volume of 659,162. The company’s 50 day simple moving average is $19.48 and its 200 day simple moving average is $22.88. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 3.85, a quick ratio of 1.22 and a current ratio of 1.47. Harsco has a one year low of $16.33 and a one year high of $30.05. The stock has a market cap of $1.61 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.31 and a beta of 2.26.

Harsco (NYSE:HSC) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 31st. The industrial products company reported $0.21 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.37 by ($0.16). Harsco had a net margin of 6.43% and a return on equity of 31.17%. The business had revenue of $350.90 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $478.30 million. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.48 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 3.2% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Harsco will post 1.48 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

HSC has been the subject of several research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Harsco from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $20.00 target price for the company in a research report on Wednesday, August 28th. TheStreet downgraded Harsco from a “b” rating to a “c+” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 31st. ValuEngine lowered Harsco from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 1st. Finally, Lake Street Capital raised their price objective on Harsco from $33.00 to $36.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 26th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $30.33.

About Harsco

Harsco Corporation provides industrial services and engineered products worldwide. The company operates in three segments: Harsco Metals & Minerals, Harsco Industrial, and Harsco Rail. The Harsco Metals & Minerals segment provides on-site services of material logistics, product quality improvement, and resource recovery for iron, steel, and metals manufacturing; and value added environmental solutions for industrial co-products, as well as produces industrial abrasives and roofing granules.

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