Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of McCormick & Co. (NYSE:MKC) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report released on Tuesday morning.
According to Zacks, “Estimates have been moving upward since McCormick delivered better-than-expected results in the third quarter of fiscal 2016. In fact, the company has been delivering better-than-expected earnings in the last four consecutive quarters. McCormick has been witnessing rising demand for spices, herbs and seasonings over the last few years, which is boosting its sales. Product innovation, brand marketing support and expanded distribution, as well as pricing actions also led to sales growth, offsetting the negative impact of material costs and currency. It is encouraging that McCormick is focusing on building sales through acquisitions, and expects strong sales momentum to continue in fiscal 2016. Its cost savings initiatives are also appealing. The company has thus raised its financial guidance for fiscal 2016 driven by strong year-to-date performance and current projections for the fourth quarter.”
Several other brokerages have also recently commented on MKC. Sanford C. Bernstein cut McCormick & Co. from an outperform rating to a market perform rating and decreased their target price for the stock from $113.00 to $104.00 in a report on Friday, September 16th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Deutsche Bank AG decreased their target price on McCormick & Co. from $113.00 to $112.00 and set a buy rating on the stock in a report on Friday, September 23rd. Jefferies Group decreased their target price on McCormick & Co. from $100.00 to $95.00 and set a hold rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, October 12th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group AG upgraded McCormick & Co. from a neutral rating to an outperform rating and set a $111.00 target price on the stock in a report on Tuesday, October 25th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $100.11.
Shares of McCormick & Co. (NYSE:MKC) opened at 91.08 on Tuesday. McCormick & Co. has a 12-month low of $78.45 and a 12-month high of $107.84. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $93.91 and its 200 day moving average price is $98.70. The firm has a market cap of $11.48 billion, a P/E ratio of 25.15 and a beta of 0.50.
McCormick & Co. (NYSE:MKC) last announced its earnings results on Friday, September 30th. The company reported $1.03 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.94 by $0.09. The company had revenue of $1.09 billion for the quarter. McCormick & Co. had a return on equity of 27.26% and a net margin of 10.58%. McCormick & Co.’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.85 EPS. On average, equities analysts expect that McCormick & Co. will post $3.79 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
In other McCormick & Co. news, Director Freeman A. Hrabowski III sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $94.15, for a total transaction of $188,300.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 38,442 shares in the company, valued at $3,619,314.30. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Company insiders own 13.70% of the company’s stock.
A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. LPL Financial LLC boosted its position in shares of McCormick & Co. by 6.2% in the third quarter. LPL Financial LLC now owns 12,138 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,171,000 after buying an additional 707 shares during the period. Verition Fund Management LLC bought a new position in shares of McCormick & Co. during the third quarter worth about $591,000. Eaton Vance Management boosted its position in shares of McCormick & Co. by 1.6% in the third quarter. Eaton Vance Management now owns 48,884 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,884,000 after buying an additional 755 shares during the period. KCM Investment Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of McCormick & Co. by 0.7% in the third quarter. KCM Investment Advisors LLC now owns 25,089 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,507,000 after buying an additional 163 shares during the period. Finally, Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB bought a new position in shares of McCormick & Co. during the third quarter worth about $2,444,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 73.78% of the company’s stock.
McCormick & Co. Company Profile
McCormick & Company, Incorporated manufactures, markets and distributes spices, seasoning mixes, condiments and other flavorful products to the food industry, including retailers, food manufacturers and foodservice businesses. The Company operates in two segments: consumer and industrial. Its brands in the Americas include McCormick, Lawry’s, Stubb’s, Club House, Zatarain’s, Thai Kitchen and Simply Asia.