Eagle Asset Management Inc. raised its stake in Stepan Company (NYSE:SCL) by 45.6% during the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 119,226 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after buying an additional 37,338 shares during the period. Eagle Asset Management Inc.’s holdings in Stepan Company were worth $9,396,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Several other hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in SCL. Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC increased its position in Stepan Company by 1.8% in the first quarter. Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC now owns 1,568 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $124,000 after buying an additional 28 shares in the last quarter. Crow Point Partners LLC purchased a new position in Stepan Company during the third quarter valued at approximately $142,000. Glen Harbor Capital Management LLC increased its position in Stepan Company by 1.8% in the first quarter. Glen Harbor Capital Management LLC now owns 1,904 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $150,000 after buying an additional 34 shares in the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue increased its position in Stepan Company by 1.9% in the first quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 2,150 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $169,000 after buying an additional 40 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Suntrust Banks Inc. purchased a new position in Stepan Company during the third quarter valued at approximately $220,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 61.61% of the company’s stock.
Shares of Stepan Company (NYSE:SCL) traded up 2.03% during trading on Friday, hitting $83.10. The stock had a trading volume of 101,360 shares. Stepan Company has a 52 week low of $55.87 and a 52 week high of $89.90. The company has a market capitalization of $1.87 billion, a PE ratio of 21.38 and a beta of 1.17. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $81.46 and a 200 day moving average price of $79.34.
Stepan Company (NYSE:SCL) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, April 25th. The basic materials company reported $1.36 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.19 by $0.17. Stepan Company had a net margin of 5.03% and a return on equity of 16.74%. The firm had revenue of $468.30 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $461.70 million. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.29 earnings per share. Stepan Company’s revenue was up 5.0% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts anticipate that Stepan Company will post $4.64 earnings per share for the current year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 15th. Investors of record on Tuesday, May 30th will be issued a $0.205 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, May 25th. This represents a $0.82 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.01%. Stepan Company’s payout ratio is 21.19%.
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Several research firms have commented on SCL. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Stepan Company from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $97.00 target price for the company in a research report on Thursday, May 4th. Wellington Shields upgraded Stepan Company from a “hold” rating to an “accumulate” rating in a research report on Friday, February 24th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, two have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Stepan Company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $57.40.
In other Stepan Company news, Chairman F Quinn Stepan, Jr. sold 9,619 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.32, for a total transaction of $820,693.08. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 142,475 shares in the company, valued at $12,155,967. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Chairman F Quinn Stepan, Jr. sold 5,381 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $85.15, for a total transaction of $458,192.15. Following the sale, the chairman now owns 141,952 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $12,087,212.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 51,893 shares of company stock valued at $4,417,054. 14.40% of the stock is owned by insiders.
Stepan Company Company Profile
Stepan Company produces specialty and intermediate chemicals, which are sold to other manufacturers and used in a range of end products. The Company operates through three segments: Surfactants, Polymers and Specialty Products. The Company’s principal markets include manufacturers of cleaning and washing compounds (including detergents, shampoos, fabric softeners, toothpastes and household cleaners), paints, cosmetics, food, beverages, nutritional supplements, agricultural products and plastics.
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