Essendant Inc. (NASDAQ:ESND) has received an average broker rating score of 3.00 (Hold) from the two analysts that cover the company, Zacks Investment Research reports. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating. Essendant’s rating score has declined by 50% from 90 days ago as a result of various analysts’ ratings changes.
Brokerages have set a one year consensus target price of $23.50 for the company and are forecasting that the company will post $0.67 EPS for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Zacks has also given Essendant an industry rank of 22 out of 265 based on the ratings given to related companies.
Separately, Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Essendant from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Monday, July 25th.
In related news, COO Timothy P. Connolly sold 5,765 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $19.24, for a total value of $110,918.60. Following the completion of the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 40,773 shares in the company, valued at $784,472.52. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. 1.60% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. boosted its stake in Essendant by 115.9% in the first quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. now owns 37,960 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,212,000 after buying an additional 20,381 shares during the period. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in Essendant by 0.3% in the first quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 124,359 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,971,000 after buying an additional 395 shares during the period. Prudential Financial Inc. boosted its stake in Essendant by 117.7% in the first quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 242,330 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,738,000 after buying an additional 131,037 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in Essendant by 55.5% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 3,947 shares of the company’s stock worth $126,000 after buying an additional 1,409 shares during the period. Finally, BlackRock Group LTD boosted its stake in Essendant by 8.4% in the first quarter. BlackRock Group LTD now owns 51,719 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,651,000 after buying an additional 3,990 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 96.98% of the company’s stock.
Shares of Essendant (NASDAQ:ESND) traded down 0.68% during mid-day trading on Monday, reaching $20.38. The company had a trading volume of 24,917 shares. Essendant has a 52-week low of $18.56 and a 52-week high of $36.96. The company’s market capitalization is $760.11 million. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $19.52 and its 200-day moving average price is $27.10.
Essendant (NASDAQ:ESND) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 20th. The company reported $0.55 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.83 by $0.28. Essendant had a positive return on equity of 13.75% and a negative net margin of 0.72%. The company earned $1.35 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.36 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.82 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up .9% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts forecast that Essendant will post $2.24 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, January 13th. Investors of record on Thursday, December 15th will be issued a $0.14 dividend. This represents a $0.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.73%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, December 13th. Essendant’s dividend payout ratio is presently -52.34%.
Essendant Inc (Essendant), formerly United Stationers Inc, is a wholesale distributor of workplace items. The Company stocks an assortment of over 180,000 products in categories, including janitorial and breakroom supplies, technology products, traditional office products, industrial supplies, office furniture, and automotive aftermarket tools and equipment.
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