International Paper Co. (NYSE:IP) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a report issued on Monday. The firm currently has a $55.00 target price on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price target suggests a potential upside of 14.63% from the stock’s previous close.
According to Zacks, “International Paper is undergoing restructuring initiatives to transform itself into a core packaging firm. The acquisition of Weyerhaeuser’s pulp business will strengthen International Paper’s position in the global fluff pulp market and augment its operating cash flow. In addition, the company expects the transaction to generate annual synergies of approximately $175 million by 2018 along with a higher flexibility to manage a wide portfolio of products through superior R&D capabilities and priceless patent portfolio. In North America, the company also envisions a large opportunity within its industrial packaging businesses. International Paper has a positive earnings surprise history, having beaten estimates in each of the trailing four quarters. Earnings estimates have remained steady over the last week. However, huge pension obligations and volatility in raw material prices could reduce its profitability.”
Other equities research analysts also recently issued reports about the stock. Wells Fargo & Co. restated a “buy” rating on shares of International Paper in a research note on Monday, June 20th. Vetr downgraded shares of International Paper from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $46.81 target price for the company. in a research note on Monday, June 20th. Credit Suisse Group AG restated a “hold” rating and issued a $47.00 target price on shares of International Paper in a research note on Monday, August 1st. Deutsche Bank AG raised their target price on shares of International Paper from $40.00 to $42.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 10th. Finally, Jefferies Group restated a “hold” rating on shares of International Paper in a research note on Friday, August 5th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating, three have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $47.71.
Shares of International Paper (NYSE:IP) opened at 47.98 on Monday. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $48.00 and its 200-day moving average is $43.98. The company has a market cap of $19.73 billion, a P/E ratio of 25.99 and a beta of 1.55. International Paper has a 12 month low of $32.50 and a 12 month high of $49.90.
International Paper (NYSE:IP) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.92 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.84 by $0.08. The company earned $5.30 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.32 billion. International Paper had a net margin of 3.58% and a return on equity of 35.41%. International Paper’s revenue was down 6.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.97 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts forecast that International Paper will post $3.49 EPS for the current year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 15th. Investors of record on Monday, August 15th were issued a dividend of $0.44 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, August 11th. This represents a $1.76 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.67%. International Paper’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 94.12%.
In other International Paper news, insider Thomas G. Kadien sold 10,000 shares of International Paper stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.86, for a total value of $478,600.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CFO Carol L. Roberts sold 12,256 shares of International Paper stock in a transaction on Monday, August 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $46.20, for a total transaction of $566,227.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.64% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Kentucky Retirement Systems Insurance Trust Fund purchased a new position in International Paper during the second quarter worth $704,000. Kentucky Retirement Systems purchased a new position in International Paper during the second quarter worth $1,482,000. Mason Street Advisors LLC purchased a new position in International Paper during the second quarter worth $2,347,000. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. boosted its position in International Paper by 17.4% in the second quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 4,834 shares of the company’s stock worth $206,000 after buying an additional 715 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio boosted its position in International Paper by 10.4% in the second quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 160,274 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,792,000 after buying an additional 15,082 shares during the last quarter. 81.73% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
International Paper Company Profile
International Paper Company (International Paper) is a paper and packaging company with primary markets and manufacturing operations in North America, Europe, Latin America, Russia, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. The Company operates in three segments: Industrial Packaging, Printing Papers and Consumer Packaging.
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