A. O. Smith Co. (NYSE:AOS) Sees Significant Growth in Short Interest

A. O. Smith Co. (NYSE:AOSGet Free Report) was the target of a significant increase in short interest during the month of March. As of March 15th, there was short interest totalling 3,310,000 shares, an increase of 12.6% from the February 29th total of 2,940,000 shares. Currently, 2.8% of the company’s shares are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 905,400 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 3.7 days.

Analyst Ratings Changes

Several analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Northcoast Research raised shares of A. O. Smith from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $90.00 price target for the company in a research note on Tuesday, December 12th. Stifel Nicolaus lifted their price objective on shares of A. O. Smith from $74.00 to $80.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, December 19th. StockNews.com lowered shares of A. O. Smith from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, March 6th. Finally, Citigroup lifted their price objective on shares of A. O. Smith from $76.00 to $82.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Monday, December 11th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. Based on data from MarketBeat, the stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $83.40.

Read Our Latest Research Report on AOS

Insiders Place Their Bets

In other A. O. Smith news, Director Idelle K. Wolf sold 814 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, February 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.00, for a total value of $65,120.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 46,140 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,691,200. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. In other news, Director Ajita G. Rajendra sold 24,669 shares of A. O. Smith stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, February 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $83.02, for a total transaction of $2,048,020.38. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 56,951 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,728,072.02. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, Director Idelle K. Wolf sold 814 shares of A. O. Smith stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.00, for a total transaction of $65,120.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 46,140 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,691,200. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 95,631 shares of company stock valued at $8,042,535 over the last 90 days. Insiders own 2.70% of the company’s stock.

Institutional Trading of A. O. Smith

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of AOS. HighTower Advisors LLC grew its holdings in A. O. Smith by 1.2% in the first quarter. HighTower Advisors LLC now owns 17,210 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $1,093,000 after purchasing an additional 208 shares during the period. MetLife Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of A. O. Smith by 21.4% in the first quarter. MetLife Investment Management LLC now owns 35,713 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $2,282,000 after acquiring an additional 6,288 shares during the last quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS boosted its stake in shares of A. O. Smith by 5.2% in the first quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 17,584 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $1,123,000 after acquiring an additional 867 shares during the last quarter. Raymond James Trust N.A. boosted its stake in shares of A. O. Smith by 4.9% in the first quarter. Raymond James Trust N.A. now owns 4,351 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $278,000 after acquiring an additional 205 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in shares of A. O. Smith by 1.8% in the first quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,145,799 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $73,218,000 after acquiring an additional 20,616 shares during the last quarter. 76.10% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

A. O. Smith Stock Performance

Shares of AOS opened at $89.46 on Monday. The company has a current ratio of 1.59, a quick ratio of 1.06 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.06. The firm has a market cap of $13.17 billion, a PE ratio of 24.18, a P/E/G ratio of 2.44 and a beta of 1.25. A. O. Smith has a 12 month low of $63.40 and a 12 month high of $89.96. The stock has a fifty day moving average price of $83.16 and a 200-day moving average price of $77.19.

A. O. Smith (NYSE:AOSGet Free Report) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, January 30th. The industrial products company reported $0.97 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.96 by $0.01. A. O. Smith had a return on equity of 31.05% and a net margin of 14.45%. The firm had revenue of $988.10 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $985.89 million. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.86 earnings per share. A. O. Smith’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.6% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts predict that A. O. Smith will post 4.07 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A. O. Smith Announces Dividend

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, February 15th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, January 31st were issued a $0.32 dividend. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.43%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, January 30th. A. O. Smith’s payout ratio is currently 34.59%.

A. O. Smith Company Profile

(Get Free Report)

A. O. Smith Corporation manufactures and markets residential and commercial gas and electric water heaters, boilers, heat pumps, tanks, and water treatment products in North America, China, Europe, and India. The company offers water heaters for residences, restaurants, hotels, office buildings, laundries, car washes, and small businesses; boilers for hospitals, schools, hotels, and other large commercial buildings, as well as homes, apartments, and condominiums; and water treatment products comprising point-of-entry water softeners, well water solutions, and whole-home water filtration products, and point-of-use carbon and reverse osmosis products for residences, restaurants, hotels, and offices.

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