Sonoco Products Co. (NYSE:SON) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday.
According to Zacks, “For the third quarter, Sonoco expects earnings per share in the range of $0.65–$0.70. Tough market conditions are expected to hurt its corrugating medium operations. Some of its consumer-product customers seem to be struggling to grow packaged food volumes in certain served markets. For 2016, Sonoco guides EPS in the range of $2.68–$2.74. Impact of the loss of a contract on the Display and Packaging segment and the effect of a manufacturing slowdown in the U.S. on the industrial businesses remain near-term concerns. Moreover, stronger dollar, less favorable price cost variance and the slowdown in manufacturing in the U.S. and emerging markets remain near term headwinds for Sonoco.”
Other equities research analysts have also issued reports about the stock. Deutsche Bank AG set a $42.00 price objective on shares of Sonoco Products and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Sunday, July 24th. Jefferies Group upped their price objective on shares of Sonoco Products from $42.00 to $46.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 14th. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “hold” rating and set a $46.00 target price on shares of Sonoco Products in a research note on Friday, July 22nd. Vertical Group lowered shares of Sonoco Products from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, July 25th. Finally, Vertical Research lowered shares of Sonoco Products from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, July 22nd. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $46.25.
Shares of Sonoco Products (NYSE:SON) traded down 0.98% on Tuesday, hitting $50.37. 429,434 shares of the stock were exchanged. Sonoco Products has a 1-year low of $36.56 and a 1-year high of $53.57. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $51.99 and its 200-day moving average is $49.45. The stock has a market cap of $5.05 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.87 and a beta of 1.01.
Sonoco Products (NYSE:SON) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 21st. The company reported $0.73 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.05. Sonoco Products had a net margin of 4.37% and a return on equity of 17.66%. The company had revenue of $1.21 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.26 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.68 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 3.4% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts forecast that Sonoco Products will post $2.72 earnings per share for the current year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 9th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 12th were issued a dividend of $0.37 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, August 10th. This represents a $1.48 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.91%. Sonoco Products’s payout ratio is 69.81%.
In other news, CEO Mancil J. Sanders sold 16,254 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $52.00, for a total value of $845,208.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 187,296 shares in the company, valued at $9,739,392. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, VP Vicki B. Arthur sold 1,721 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $51.00, for a total transaction of $87,771.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 39,753 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,027,403. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 1.90% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. CT Mason increased its stake in shares of Sonoco Products by 115.6% in the third quarter. CT Mason now owns 52,777 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,788,000 after buying an additional 28,301 shares in the last quarter. Mason Street Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Sonoco Products during the second quarter valued at approximately $2,282,000. Calvert Investment Management Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Sonoco Products during the second quarter valued at approximately $676,000. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Sonoco Products by 6.9% in the second quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 481,819 shares of the company’s stock valued at $23,928,000 after buying an additional 31,289 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Lowe Brockenbrough & Co. Inc. increased its stake in shares of Sonoco Products by 1.1% in the second quarter. Lowe Brockenbrough & Co. Inc. now owns 6,495 shares of the company’s stock valued at $323,000 after buying an additional 70 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 68.99% of the company’s stock.
Sonoco Products Company Profile
Sonoco Products Company (Sonoco) is a manufacturer of industrial and consumer packaging products and a provider of packaging services. The Company operates in four segments: Consumer Packaging, Paper and Industrial Converted Products, Display and Packaging, and Protective Solutions. Its Consumer Packaging segment’s products and services include round composite cans, aluminum, steel and peelable membrane easy-open closures for composite and metal cans; plastic bottles, cups and trays, and printed flexible packaging and global brand management.
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