McCormick & Company (MKC) Upgraded to Hold by Zacks Investment Research

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Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of McCormick & Company (NYSE:MKC) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report published on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “McCormick continues to incur higher raw material costs, alongside witnessing increased brand marketing and freight expenses. Going forward, management expects material costs to escalate in low-single digits in fiscal 2018, which remains a matter of concern. McCormick is also increasing brand marketing expenses significantly to further drive sales. Apart from this, stiff competition in the food space may hurt McCormick’s profits. Nonetheless, these are likely to be cushioned by McCormick’s Comprehensive Continuous Improvement program, which has been boosting margins for quite some time. These have aided the company to beat the industry in the past six months. Moreover, the company is expected to gain from its focus on buyouts, innovations and efficient cost-saving initiatives. Markedly, these factors helped the company sustain its stellar performance in first-quarter fiscal 2018, with the top and bottom lines improving year over year.”

Several other equities research analysts have also commented on MKC. Citigroup boosted their price objective on McCormick & Company from $113.00 to $114.00 and gave the stock a neutral rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 28th. Sanford C. Bernstein boosted their price objective on McCormick & Company from $113.00 to $118.00 and gave the stock a market perform rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 28th. Credit Suisse Group boosted their price objective on McCormick & Company from $120.00 to $122.00 and gave the stock an outperform rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 28th. Finally, UBS Group boosted their price objective on McCormick & Company from $106.00 to $108.00 and gave the stock a neutral rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 28th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $113.25.

NYSE MKC traded up $0.84 during trading hours on Thursday, reaching $105.91. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 2,384 shares, compared to its average volume of 873,491. The stock has a market capitalization of $13.87 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.66, a PEG ratio of 2.39 and a beta of 0.57. McCormick & Company has a 1-year low of $90.25 and a 1-year high of $111.46. The company has a current ratio of 0.86, a quick ratio of 0.42 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.43.

McCormick & Company (NYSE:MKC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, March 27th. The company reported $1.00 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.91 by $0.09. McCormick & Company had a return on equity of 23.39% and a net margin of 16.04%. The company had revenue of $1.24 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.24 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $0.76 EPS. McCormick & Company’s quarterly revenue was up 18.5% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts predict that McCormick & Company will post 4.92 EPS for the current fiscal year.

A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of MKC. BlackRock Inc. grew its position in shares of McCormick & Company by 1.3% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 9,966,369 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,060,322,000 after purchasing an additional 130,107 shares in the last quarter. Clearbridge Investments LLC grew its position in shares of McCormick & Company by 41.5% in the fourth quarter. Clearbridge Investments LLC now owns 4,455,263 shares of the company’s stock valued at $454,036,000 after purchasing an additional 1,306,536 shares in the last quarter. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. grew its position in shares of McCormick & Company by 12.5% in the fourth quarter. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. now owns 1,833,148 shares of the company’s stock valued at $186,816,000 after purchasing an additional 204,078 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC grew its position in shares of McCormick & Company by 19.8% in the fourth quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 1,391,100 shares of the company’s stock valued at $141,767,000 after purchasing an additional 229,900 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp grew its position in shares of McCormick & Company by 4.0% in the fourth quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,067,951 shares of the company’s stock valued at $108,835,000 after purchasing an additional 41,446 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 78.33% of the company’s stock.

About McCormick & Company

McCormick & Company, Incorporated manufactures, markets, and distributes spices, seasoning mixes, condiments, and other flavorful products to the food industry. The company operates through two segments, Consumer and Industrial. The Consumer segment offers spices, herbs, and seasonings, as well as desserts.

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Analyst Recommendations for McCormick & Company (NYSE:MKC)

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