Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST) Sees Large Growth in Short Interest

Fastenal (NASDAQ:FASTGet Rating) was the target of a large growth in short interest in the month of February. As of February 28th, there was short interest totalling 14,720,000 shares, a growth of 5.8% from the February 13th total of 13,910,000 shares. Currently, 2.6% of the shares of the company are short sold. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 3,350,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 4.4 days.

Insider Buying and Selling

In other Fastenal news, VP Terry Modock Owen sold 15,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.24, for a total transaction of $798,600.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 7,000 shares in the company, valued at $372,680. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. 0.45% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Institutional Inflows and Outflows

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Norges Bank bought a new stake in shares of Fastenal during the fourth quarter worth $268,570,000. Morgan Stanley increased its stake in shares of Fastenal by 37.8% in the fourth quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 9,092,207 shares of the company’s stock valued at $430,243,000 after buying an additional 2,492,722 shares during the period. Royal Bank of Canada boosted its position in Fastenal by 82.6% during the 3rd quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 5,437,480 shares of the company’s stock worth $250,340,000 after buying an additional 2,460,307 shares during the period. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans increased its position in Fastenal by 816.9% in the 4th quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans now owns 1,983,091 shares of the company’s stock valued at $93,841,000 after acquiring an additional 1,766,818 shares during the period. Finally, Marshall Wace LLP grew its stake in shares of Fastenal by 1,298.1% in the third quarter. Marshall Wace LLP now owns 1,663,643 shares of the company’s stock worth $76,592,000 after purchasing an additional 1,544,650 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 76.99% of the company’s stock.

Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth

Several research firms recently issued reports on FAST. Morgan Stanley reduced their price target on Fastenal from $43.00 to $42.00 and set an “underweight” rating for the company in a research note on Friday, January 6th. Loop Capital reduced their target price on shares of Fastenal from $54.00 to $53.00 and set a “hold” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, January 23rd. Finally, assumed coverage on shares of Fastenal in a research report on Thursday. They set a “hold” rating on the stock. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat, the company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $51.14.

Fastenal Stock Performance

FAST opened at $52.14 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $29.77 billion, a P/E ratio of 27.44, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.00 and a beta of 1.19. The business’s fifty day moving average is $51.30 and its 200-day moving average is $49.67. Fastenal has a 52-week low of $43.73 and a 52-week high of $60.74. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.11, a quick ratio of 1.79 and a current ratio of 3.96.

Fastenal (NASDAQ:FASTGet Rating) last released its earnings results on Thursday, January 19th. The company reported $0.43 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.42 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $1.70 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.67 billion. Fastenal had a net margin of 15.57% and a return on equity of 34.38%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 10.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.40 EPS. Sell-side analysts expect that Fastenal will post 1.94 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Fastenal Increases Dividend

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, March 2nd. Investors of record on Thursday, February 2nd were paid a $0.35 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, February 1st. This is a positive change from Fastenal’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.31. This represents a $1.40 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.69%. Fastenal’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 73.68%.

Fastenal Company Profile

(Get Rating)

Fastenal Co engages in the distribution of fasteners and tools. It also operates hardware stores. The company was founded by Robert A. Kierlin, Michael M. Gostomski, Henry K. McCannon, John D. Remick, and Stephen M. Slaggie in November 1967 and is headquartered in Winona, MN.

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