Universal Forest Products (UFPI) Rating Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

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Universal Forest Products (NASDAQ:UFPI) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “In the past three months, Universal Forest Products' shares have outperformed the industry. Meaningful acquisitions have been the company's preferred mode of business expansion. Recently, it added North American Container to its portfolio. This buyout will enhance the company's growth opportunities in the industrial market. Beside this, the company is poised to benefit from solid housing starts along with rising demand for repair and remodeling activities in the quarters ahead. Also, the addition of customers and new product launches remain priorities for the company. For 2018, revenues of $450 million are anticipated from new products.”

UFPI has been the topic of several other reports. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Universal Forest Products from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Saturday, April 28th. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “hold” rating and set a $37.00 price objective on shares of Universal Forest Products in a research report on Monday, April 2nd. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of Universal Forest Products from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, April 2nd. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $38.50.

Shares of Universal Forest Products stock opened at $38.03 on Tuesday. Universal Forest Products has a 1 year low of $25.93 and a 1 year high of $39.58. The company has a current ratio of 3.33, a quick ratio of 1.67 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.26. The firm has a market cap of $2.34 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.67, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.05 and a beta of 1.88.

Universal Forest Products (NASDAQ:UFPI) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, April 18th. The construction company reported $0.45 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.42 by $0.03. Universal Forest Products had a net margin of 3.21% and a return on equity of 12.44%. The company had revenue of $993.90 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $914.75 million. During the same period last year, the firm posted $1.03 EPS. Universal Forest Products’s revenue for the quarter was up 17.5% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts forecast that Universal Forest Products will post 2.49 EPS for the current year.

In other news, insider Jonathan E. West sold 2,650 shares of Universal Forest Products stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, April 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $32.64, for a total value of $86,496.00. Following the sale, the insider now owns 40,571 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,324,237.44. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, COO Patrick M. Webster sold 12,881 shares of Universal Forest Products stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.76, for a total transaction of $499,267.56. Following the completion of the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 201,560 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,812,465.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 3.40% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of UFPI. Quantbot Technologies LP boosted its holdings in shares of Universal Forest Products by 267.4% in the first quarter. Quantbot Technologies LP now owns 3,310 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $107,000 after acquiring an additional 2,409 shares in the last quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale boosted its holdings in shares of Universal Forest Products by 202.4% in the first quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale now owns 3,420 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $109,000 after acquiring an additional 2,289 shares in the last quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank boosted its holdings in shares of Universal Forest Products by 370.0% in the fourth quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 2,942 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $111,000 after acquiring an additional 2,316 shares in the last quarter. Meeder Asset Management Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Universal Forest Products by 179.0% in the first quarter. Meeder Asset Management Inc. now owns 3,962 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $129,000 after acquiring an additional 2,542 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Silvant Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Universal Forest Products in the first quarter valued at about $182,000. 77.85% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Universal Forest Products Company Profile

Universal Forest Products, Inc, through its subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, and markets wood and wood-alternative products in North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. The company offers preserved and unpreserved dimensional lumber; outdoor living products, including wood composite decking, and decorative lawn and garden products; and engineered wood components, which include roof and floor trusses, wall panels, engineered floor systems, I-joists, and lumber packages.

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