Fort Pitt Capital Group LLC decreased its stake in shares of Westlake Chemical Co. (NYSE:WLK) by 1.9% in the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 342,724 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock after selling 6,679 shares during the quarter. Westlake Chemical makes up 2.8% of Fort Pitt Capital Group LLC’s portfolio, making the stock its 16th largest position. Fort Pitt Capital Group LLC owned 0.26% of Westlake Chemical worth $36,887,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in WLK. Prudential Financial Inc. lifted its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 95.7% during the 1st quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 763,942 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $84,913,000 after buying an additional 373,510 shares in the last quarter. Capital Growth Management LP purchased a new position in Westlake Chemical during the 1st quarter valued at about $40,014,000. Mackay Shields LLC purchased a new position in Westlake Chemical during the 1st quarter valued at about $22,351,000. James Investment Research Inc. purchased a new position in Westlake Chemical during the 2nd quarter valued at about $16,865,000. Finally, KBC Group NV increased its position in Westlake Chemical by 376.5% during the 1st quarter. KBC Group NV now owns 195,200 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $21,696,000 after purchasing an additional 154,233 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 29.97% of the company’s stock.
WLK has been the topic of a number of research reports. MED reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Westlake Chemical in a research report on Tuesday, May 29th. ValuEngine raised shares of Westlake Chemical from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Saturday, May 12th. Citigroup cut their target price on shares of Westlake Chemical from $133.00 to $131.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, July 11th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Westlake Chemical from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 18th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reissued a “hold” rating and set a $111.00 target price on shares of Westlake Chemical in a research report on Friday, August 3rd. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $117.71.
In other Westlake Chemical news, Chairman James Chao sold 33,305 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $120.69, for a total transaction of $4,019,580.45. Following the sale, the chairman now owns 51,492 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $6,214,569.48. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 72.00% of the stock is owned by insiders.
Shares of Westlake Chemical stock opened at $96.59 on Tuesday. The company has a current ratio of 2.27, a quick ratio of 1.51 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.46. Westlake Chemical Co. has a 52-week low of $70.26 and a 52-week high of $124.29. The company has a market capitalization of $12.71 billion, a PE ratio of 17.62, a PEG ratio of 0.83 and a beta of 1.55.
Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 2nd. The specialty chemicals company reported $2.22 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.52 by ($0.30). Westlake Chemical had a return on equity of 19.44% and a net margin of 18.55%. The firm had revenue of $2.24 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.19 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.21 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 12.9% on a year-over-year basis. equities research analysts expect that Westlake Chemical Co. will post 9.03 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, September 12th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, August 28th will be given a $0.25 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, August 27th. This represents a $1.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.04%. This is an increase from Westlake Chemical’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.21. Westlake Chemical’s payout ratio is presently 15.36%.
Westlake Chemical Profile
Westlake Chemical Corporation manufactures and markets basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers, and building products primarily in North America and Europe. 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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