Griffon (NYSE:GFF) Sees Unusually-High Trading Volume on Better-Than-Expected Earnings

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Griffon Co. (NYSE:GFF) shares saw an uptick in trading volume on Thursday following a better than expected earnings announcement. 862,277 shares changed hands during mid-day trading, an increase of 369% from the previous session’s volume of 183,932 shares.The stock last traded at $24.97 and had previously closed at $21.73.

The conglomerate reported $0.40 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.33 by $0.07. The company had revenue of $574.16 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $570.10 million. Griffon had a return on equity of 9.39% and a net margin of 0.91%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.38 earnings per share.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 19th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, November 27th will be issued a dividend of $0.075 per share. This represents a $0.30 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.34%. This is a positive change from Griffon’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.07. Griffon’s dividend payout ratio is currently 26.85%.

A number of research firms have weighed in on GFF. Sidoti upped their target price on Griffon from $24.00 to $27.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday. Zacks Investment Research lowered Griffon from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 2nd. TheStreet upgraded Griffon from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 21st. Finally, ValuEngine upgraded Griffon from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 15th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Griffon currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $22.33.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System lifted its holdings in shares of Griffon by 21.7% during the 3rd quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 15,700 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $329,000 after purchasing an additional 2,800 shares during the last quarter. Swiss National Bank lifted its holdings in shares of Griffon by 19.6% during the 2nd quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 69,700 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $1,179,000 after purchasing an additional 11,400 shares during the last quarter. Rhumbline Advisers lifted its holdings in shares of Griffon by 16.8% during the 3rd quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 135,146 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $2,834,000 after purchasing an additional 19,422 shares during the last quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund lifted its holdings in shares of Griffon by 5.4% during the 2nd quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 13,792 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $233,000 after purchasing an additional 702 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Prudential Financial Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Griffon by 24.7% during the 2nd quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 155,421 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $2,630,000 after purchasing an additional 30,760 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 66.40% of the company’s stock.

The firm has a fifty day moving average price of $20.94 and a 200 day moving average price of $18.02. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.38, a quick ratio of 1.43 and a current ratio of 2.62. The stock has a market cap of $1.02 billion, a PE ratio of 20.79 and a beta of 2.13.

About Griffon (NYSE:GFF)

Griffon Corp. is a management and holding company, which engages in the direction and assistance to its subsidiaries. It operates through the Home and Building Products, and Defense Electronics segments. The Home and Building Products segment consists of two companies, which manufactures branded consumer and professional tools, landscaping products, and outdoor lifestyle solutions; and sells residential,and commercial garage doors.

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