Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Ball Corp. (NYSE:BLL) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note released on Wednesday. They currently have $89.00 price objective on the stock.
According to Zacks, “Ball Corporation will gain from Rexam acquisition which will help to simplify and streamline its business and is deliver over $300 million in synergies by the end of 2019. Recently, Ball Corporation entered into an agreement to sell its specialty tin manufacturing facility in Baltimore, MD, to U.S.-based Independent Can Company for around $25 million. This divestiture will help it to focus on maximizing value and generating positive EVA dollars in its core businesses. The deal will also enable the company to better align with its strategic focus on food and aerosol packaging. Meanwhile, it will also benefit from multiple growth capital projects ramping up in the remainder of 2016 and beyond. Strong backlog, robust demand and increasing EVA dollar generation remain tailwinds.”
Other equities analysts have also recently issued research reports about the company. JPMorgan Chase & Co. restated a buy rating on shares of Ball Corp. in a report on Saturday, July 9th. Jefferies Group raised their price objective on Ball Corp. from $86.00 to $94.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Friday, August 5th. TheStreet upgraded Ball Corp. from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Thursday, August 4th. Robert W. Baird restated an outperform rating and issued a $85.00 price objective on shares of Ball Corp. in a report on Sunday, August 7th. Finally, Vertical Research cut Ball Corp. from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Friday, August 5th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Ball Corp. presently has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $85.43.
Ball Corp. (NYSE:BLL) opened at 78.32 on Wednesday. Ball Corp. has a one year low of $62.30 and a one year high of $82.24. The stock has a market cap of $13.65 billion, a P/E ratio of 36.09 and a beta of 1.02. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $79.45 and its 200-day moving average price is $74.41.
Ball Corp. (NYSE:BLL) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 4th. The company reported $1.05 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.99 by $0.06. The company earned $2.03 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.17 billion. Ball Corp. had a return on equity of 27.28% and a net margin of 4.45%. Ball Corp.’s revenue for the quarter was down 6.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.89 EPS. On average, analysts predict that Ball Corp. will post $3.44 earnings per share for the current year.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 15th. Investors of record on Thursday, September 1st were issued a dividend of $0.13 per share. This represents a $0.52 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.66%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, August 30th. Ball Corp.’s payout ratio is currently 22.13%.
In other news, Director Daniel J. Heinrich acquired 3,000 shares of Ball Corp. stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 9th. The stock was bought at an average price of $80.73 per share, for a total transaction of $242,190.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now directly owns 3,000 shares in the company, valued at approximately $242,190. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, VP Shawn M. Barker sold 16,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $80.34, for a total value of $1,285,440.00. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 3,397 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $272,914.98. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 3.50% of the company’s stock.
Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Carnick & Kubik Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Ball Corp. during the second quarter worth about $1,157,000. Kentucky Retirement Systems Insurance Trust Fund purchased a new stake in shares of Ball Corp. during the second quarter worth about $414,000. Kentucky Retirement Systems purchased a new stake in shares of Ball Corp. during the second quarter worth about $872,000. Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company LLC boosted its stake in shares of Ball Corp. by 22.1% in the second quarter. Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company LLC now owns 6,607 shares of the company’s stock worth $478,000 after buying an additional 1,197 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Mason Street Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Ball Corp. during the second quarter worth about $1,694,000. Institutional investors own 77.68% of the company’s stock.
Ball Corp. Company Profile
Ball Corporation (Ball) is a supplier of metal packaging to the beverage, food, personal care and household products industries. The Company’s packaging products are produced for a range of end uses and are manufactured in facilities around the world. The Company operates in four segments: metal beverage packaging, Americas and Asia; metal beverage packaging, Europe; metal food and household products packaging, and aerospace and technologies.
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