Westlake Chemical Co. (NYSE:WLK) has received a consensus recommendation of “Hold” from the twenty brokerages that are covering the stock, Marketbeat.com reports. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have issued a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The average 12-month target price among brokers that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $53.47.
Several research firms recently weighed in on WLK. Wells Fargo & Co upgraded shares of Westlake Chemical from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and lifted their price target for the company from $57.00 to $70.00 in a report on Thursday, June 11th. KeyCorp began coverage on shares of Westlake Chemical in a report on Wednesday, March 25th. They issued a “sector weight” rating on the stock. Barclays reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $47.00 price target on shares of Westlake Chemical in a report on Friday, April 17th. UBS Group lifted their price target on shares of Westlake Chemical from $26.00 to $28.00 and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 6th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada cut their price target on shares of Westlake Chemical from $45.00 to $43.00 and set a “sector perform” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, May 5th.
A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Mercer Global Advisors Inc. ADV raised its position in Westlake Chemical by 3.4% in the 4th quarter. Mercer Global Advisors Inc. ADV now owns 6,521 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $457,000 after buying an additional 213 shares during the last quarter. BancorpSouth Bank raised its position in Westlake Chemical by 4.1% in the 1st quarter. BancorpSouth Bank now owns 8,957 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $342,000 after buying an additional 355 shares during the last quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank raised its position in Westlake Chemical by 8.6% in the 4th quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 6,737 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $472,000 after buying an additional 535 shares during the last quarter. Smith Graham & Co. Investment Advisors LP raised its position in Westlake Chemical by 0.7% in the 1st quarter. Smith Graham & Co. Investment Advisors LP now owns 78,659 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $3,002,000 after buying an additional 553 shares during the last quarter. Finally, AGF Investments Inc. raised its position in Westlake Chemical by 3.6% in the 1st quarter. AGF Investments Inc. now owns 16,705 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $638,000 after buying an additional 578 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 27.66% of the company’s stock.
Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) last released its quarterly earnings results on Monday, May 4th. The specialty chemicals company reported $0.65 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.57 by $0.08. The business had revenue of $1.93 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.90 billion. Westlake Chemical had a net margin of 6.16% and a return on equity of 6.41%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 4.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.55 earnings per share. Equities research analysts predict that Westlake Chemical will post 1.22 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, June 9th. Investors of record on Tuesday, May 26th were paid a $0.2625 dividend. This represents a $1.05 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.95%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, May 22nd. Westlake Chemical’s payout ratio is 32.21%.
About Westlake Chemical
Westlake Chemical Corporation manufactures and markets basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers, and building products worldwide. It operates through two segments, Olefins and Vinyls. The Olefins segment offers polyethylene, styrene monomers, and various ethylene co-products, as well as sells propylene, crude butadiene, pyrolysis gasoline, and hydrogen products.
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