Rockwell Automation, Inc. (NYSE:ROK) Upgraded to “Buy” by Zacks Investment Research

Rockwell Automation, Inc. (NYSE:ROK) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued on Tuesday, October 17th. The firm presently has a $209.00 target price on the industrial products company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s target price suggests a potential upside of 10.71% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Backed by an improving macro environment, Rockwell Automation expects adjusted earnings per share to lie between $6.60 and $6.80 and projects sales to be around $6.3 billion in fiscal 2017. The company will benefit from the consistent growth in the consumer and transportation verticals and expects heavy industries to grow in 2017 despite the prevailing softness in oil and gas and mining. Further, increased investment, acquisitions, product launches and share repurchases will support growth. Its shares have outperformed the industry in the past year.”

A number of other equities research analysts also recently weighed in on ROK. BidaskClub raised shares of Rockwell Automation from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, June 20th. Cowen and Company upped their price target on shares of Rockwell Automation from $125.00 to $140.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a report on Thursday, July 6th. Wolfe Research started coverage on shares of Rockwell Automation in a report on Tuesday, July 11th. They issued a “peer perform” rating for the company. Stifel Nicolaus reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $167.00 price target on shares of Rockwell Automation in a report on Wednesday, July 19th. Finally, HSBC Holdings plc reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $147.00 price target (up from $134.00) on shares of Rockwell Automation in a report on Saturday, July 22nd. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have issued a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $164.07.

Rockwell Automation (NYSE ROK) opened at 188.78 on Tuesday. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $178.88 and its 200-day moving average is $165.24. Rockwell Automation has a 12 month low of $117.24 and a 12 month high of $189.91. The firm has a market cap of $24.23 billion, a PE ratio of 30.44 and a beta of 1.19.

Rockwell Automation (NYSE:ROK) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 26th. The industrial products company reported $1.76 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.64 by $0.12. Rockwell Automation had a net margin of 13.04% and a return on equity of 40.71%. The company had revenue of $1.60 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.58 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $1.55 EPS. Rockwell Automation’s revenue was up 8.5% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts expect that Rockwell Automation will post $6.78 earnings per share for the current year.

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In other news, SVP Sujeet Chand sold 9,500 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $165.13, for a total value of $1,568,735.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 41,273 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $6,815,410.49. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Keith D. Nosbusch sold 10,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, July 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $165.00, for a total transaction of $1,650,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 411,286 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $67,862,190. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 65,825 shares of company stock valued at $10,917,484 over the last three months. 1.65% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in Rockwell Automation by 7.5% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 9,698,308 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $1,570,735,000 after buying an additional 679,645 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its holdings in Rockwell Automation by 3.2% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 8,769,308 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $1,420,278,000 after buying an additional 268,101 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp increased its holdings in Rockwell Automation by 1.3% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 5,749,538 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $895,260,000 after buying an additional 76,191 shares during the last quarter. Lazard Asset Management LLC increased its holdings in Rockwell Automation by 0.5% in the second quarter. Lazard Asset Management LLC now owns 2,308,357 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $373,861,000 after buying an additional 11,384 shares during the last quarter. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased its holdings in Rockwell Automation by 5.9% in the second quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 1,459,185 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $236,330,000 after buying an additional 81,416 shares during the last quarter. 73.55% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Rockwell Automation Company Profile

Rockwell Automation, Inc (Rockwell Automation) is a provider of industrial automation power, control and information solutions for manufacturers. The Company operates through two segments: Architecture & Software and Control Products & Solutions. The Architecture & Software segment contains various hardware, software and communication components of the Company’s integrated control and information architecture capable of controlling the customer’s industrial processes and connecting with their manufacturing enterprise.

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