Gerdau (NYSE:GGB) Cut to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Gerdau (NYSE:GGB) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Tuesday morning, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “GERDAU S.A. throughout its 101 years of activities, they are largest long steel producer in Latin America, and have made an important contribution in building the history of the Brazilian industry. Gerdau Group dedicates itself to meeting the growing demands of several dynamic industries involved in the production of goods and in the development of the economy. Gerdau steel is used in construction and industry as well as in the automotive and agricultural sectors. “

Separately, TheStreet raised Gerdau from a c+ rating to a b- rating in a report on Wednesday, March 3rd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. Gerdau currently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $7.00.

Shares of GGB stock opened at $6.34 on Tuesday. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $6.20. Gerdau has a fifty-two week low of $2.54 and a fifty-two week high of $7.27. The company has a market capitalization of $10.90 billion, a PE ratio of 7.37, a P/E/G ratio of 0.33 and a beta of 1.62. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.52, a current ratio of 2.30 and a quick ratio of 1.25.

Gerdau (NYSE:GGB) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, May 5th. The basic materials company reported $0.26 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.23 by $0.03. Gerdau had a return on equity of 25.00% and a net margin of 15.79%. The business had revenue of $2.99 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.97 billion. Sell-side analysts expect that Gerdau will post 1.09 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 3rd. Investors of record on Tuesday, May 18th were paid a $0.0735 dividend. This is an increase from Gerdau’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.02. This represents a $0.29 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.64%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, May 17th. Gerdau’s dividend payout ratio is currently 51.85%.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Corient Capital Partners LLC lifted its stake in Gerdau by 11.9% in the 1st quarter. Corient Capital Partners LLC now owns 14,584 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $78,000 after acquiring an additional 1,555 shares in the last quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. increased its position in Gerdau by 61.6% in the 1st quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 5,821 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $31,000 after purchasing an additional 2,220 shares during the last quarter. Comerica Bank increased its position in Gerdau by 3.9% in the 1st quarter. Comerica Bank now owns 64,116 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $392,000 after purchasing an additional 2,410 shares during the last quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN increased its position in Gerdau by 23.4% in the 4th quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 18,793 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $88,000 after purchasing an additional 3,563 shares during the last quarter. Finally, NEXT Financial Group Inc increased its position in Gerdau by 21.7% in the 1st quarter. NEXT Financial Group Inc now owns 28,000 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $150,000 after purchasing an additional 5,000 shares during the last quarter. 3.04% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Gerdau Company Profile

Gerdau SA provides steel products and services. It operates through four segments: Brazil Business, North America Business, South America Business, and Special Steel Business. The company offers semi-finished products, including billets, blooms, and slabs; common long rolled products, such as rebars, wire rods, merchant bars, light shapes, and profiles to the construction and manufacturing industries; finished industrial products, including commercial rolled-steel bars, and light profiles and wires; agricultural products that include stakes and smooth wire products; and drawn products comprises barbed and barbless fence wires, galvanized wires, fences, concrete reinforcing wire meshes, nails, and clamps.

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