StockNews.com Lowers Ball (NYSE:BLL) to Sell

StockNews.com lowered shares of Ball (NYSE:BLLGet Rating) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report released on Thursday.

Several other research firms have also commented on BLL. Morgan Stanley lowered shares of Ball from an overweight rating to an equal weight rating and decreased their price target for the company from $110.00 to $100.00 in a report on Thursday, January 20th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Citigroup cut their price objective on shares of Ball from $104.00 to $96.00 in a research report on Friday, April 8th. Mizuho lifted their price objective on shares of Ball from $102.00 to $105.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a research report on Friday, January 28th. BMO Capital Markets upgraded shares of Ball from a market perform rating to an outperform rating and lifted their price objective for the company from $87.00 to $105.00 in a research report on Thursday, March 3rd. Finally, Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft lowered their price objective on shares of Ball from $102.00 to $98.00 in a research note on Monday, April 18th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, Ball currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $101.94.

NYSE BLL opened at $73.28 on Thursday. Ball has a one year low of $74.13 and a one year high of $98.09. The company has a 50-day simple moving average of $88.04 and a 200-day simple moving average of $90.71. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.10, a quick ratio of 0.58 and a current ratio of 0.88. The firm has a market capitalization of $23.54 billion, a PE ratio of 28.98, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 4.10 and a beta of 0.55.

Ball (NYSE:BLLGet Rating) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 5th. The industrial products company reported $0.77 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.83 by ($0.06). Ball had a net margin of 6.36% and a return on equity of 31.47%. The business had revenue of $3.72 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.52 billion. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.72 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 18.9% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts forecast that Ball will post 3.99 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, June 15th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, June 1st will be given a $0.20 dividend. This represents a $0.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.09%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, May 31st. Ball’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 30.19%.

In other Ball news, VP Nate C. Carey sold 8,563 shares of Ball stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, February 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $91.90, for a total value of $786,939.70. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Betty J. Sapp bought 1,500 shares of Ball stock in a transaction on Wednesday, March 2nd. The stock was acquired at an average price of $87.00 per share, with a total value of $130,500.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have purchased 15,862 shares of company stock worth $1,381,499 over the last ninety days. 1.40% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. AE Wealth Management LLC lifted its stake in Ball by 4.0% in the fourth quarter. AE Wealth Management LLC now owns 52,185 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $5,024,000 after acquiring an additional 2,008 shares during the last quarter. Brown Advisory Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Ball by 0.8% in the fourth quarter. Brown Advisory Inc. now owns 590,058 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $56,805,000 after buying an additional 4,908 shares during the last quarter. National Bank of Canada FI acquired a new stake in shares of Ball in the fourth quarter worth $1,299,000. M&T Bank Corp lifted its stake in shares of Ball by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. M&T Bank Corp now owns 58,956 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $5,675,000 after buying an additional 255 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank raised its stake in Ball by 8.8% during the 4th quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 122,189 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $11,763,000 after purchasing an additional 9,845 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 82.64% of the company’s stock.

About Ball (Get Rating)

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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