Ball Co. (NYSE:BALL – Get Rating) saw a large growth in short interest in February. As of February 28th, there was short interest totalling 16,520,000 shares, a growth of 8.4% from the February 13th total of 15,240,000 shares. Currently, 5.3% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 1,730,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 9.5 days.
Analysts Set New Price Targets
Several research analysts recently issued reports on BALL shares. Wells Fargo & Company upped their target price on Ball from $46.00 to $51.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a research report on Friday, February 3rd. Citigroup boosted their price target on Ball from $51.00 to $54.00 in a research note on Wednesday, January 4th. UBS Group dropped their price target on Ball from $64.00 to $58.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, December 15th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted their price target on Ball from $55.00 to $61.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Tuesday, February 7th. Finally, Mizuho boosted their price target on Ball from $53.00 to $58.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Friday, February 3rd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. According to MarketBeat.com, the stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $58.31.
Insider Activity at Ball
In related news, Director John A. Hayes sold 100,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, February 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $58.40, for a total transaction of $5,840,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 480,552 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $28,064,236.80. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. 1.40% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
Hedge Funds Weigh In On Ball
Ball Stock Up 0.0 %
Shares of BALL opened at $52.12 on Friday. Ball has a 52 week low of $46.00 and a 52 week high of $94.79. The company has a quick ratio of 0.47, a current ratio of 0.78 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.14. The company has a market capitalization of $16.39 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.37, a PEG ratio of 3.44 and a beta of 0.78. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $56.44 and its 200-day moving average price is $53.93.
Ball (NYSE:BALL – Get Rating) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, February 2nd. The company reported $0.44 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.54 by ($0.10). The company had revenue of $3.55 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.69 billion. Ball had a return on equity of 24.47% and a net margin of 4.68%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 3.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.97 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Ball will post 3.08 EPS for the current year.
Ball Dividend Announcement
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, March 15th. Investors of record on Wednesday, March 1st were issued a $0.20 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, February 28th. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.53%. Ball’s payout ratio is 35.87%.
Ball Company Profile
Ball Corp. provides metal packaging for beverages, foods, and household products. It operates through the following business segments: Beverage Packaging North and Central America, Beverage Packaging South America, Beverage Packaging Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), and Aerospace. The Beverage Packaging North and Central America segment includes multi-year supply contracts to fillers of carbonated soft drinks, beer, energy drinks, and other beverages.
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