Wells Fargo & Co initiated coverage on shares of Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) in a research note released on Tuesday, January 9th. The firm issued a hold rating and a $120.00 price target on the specialty chemicals company’s stock.
WLK has been the topic of a number of other reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Westlake Chemical from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $95.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Friday, October 13th. Vertical Research cut shares of Westlake Chemical from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Wednesday, January 3rd. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $104.00 price objective on shares of Westlake Chemical in a report on Friday, November 24th. SunTrust Banks reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $93.00 price objective on shares of Westlake Chemical in a report on Thursday, September 28th. Finally, Johnson Rice assumed coverage on shares of Westlake Chemical in a report on Monday, November 6th. They issued an accumulate rating and a $100.00 price objective on the stock. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating, eleven have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $104.00.
Westlake Chemical (NYSE WLK) traded down $0.76 during trading on Tuesday, hitting $108.01. 1,247,345 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 752,992. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.74, a quick ratio of 1.59 and a current ratio of 2.31. Westlake Chemical has a one year low of $58.98 and a one year high of $114.34. The company has a market cap of $13,940.00, a P/E ratio of 23.43, a P/E/G ratio of 1.49 and a beta of 1.72.
Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, November 7th. The specialty chemicals company reported $1.65 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.39 by $0.26. Westlake Chemical had a net margin of 7.74% and a return on equity of 15.59%. equities analysts expect that Westlake Chemical will post 5.54 EPS for the current year.
In other Westlake Chemical news, Director Robert T. Blakely sold 4,367 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $92.33, for a total transaction of $403,205.11. Following the transaction, the director now owns 11,700 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,080,261. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, EVP Robert F. Buesinger sold 2,674 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, December 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $98.50, for a total transaction of $263,389.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 6,635 shares in the company, valued at approximately $653,547.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 293,122 shares of company stock worth $27,721,443. 71.70% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in WLK. Janus Henderson Group PLC acquired a new position in Westlake Chemical during the 2nd quarter valued at about $90,442,000. Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its stake in Westlake Chemical by 218.5% during the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 934,937 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $77,683,000 after buying an additional 641,432 shares during the period. Balyasny Asset Management LLC grew its stake in shares of Westlake Chemical by 293.5% in the 2nd quarter. Balyasny Asset Management LLC now owns 623,929 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $41,310,000 after purchasing an additional 465,365 shares during the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. grew its stake in shares of Westlake Chemical by 252.9% in the 3rd quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 592,581 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $49,509,000 after purchasing an additional 424,655 shares during the last quarter. Finally, FMR LLC grew its stake in shares of Westlake Chemical by 15.0% in the 2nd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 2,808,967 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $185,981,000 after purchasing an additional 366,537 shares during the last quarter. 30.42% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
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Westlake Chemical Company Profile
Westlake Chemical Corporation is a global manufacturer and marketer of basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers and building products. The Company’s products include a range of chemicals, which are fundamental to various consumer and industrial markets, including flexible and rigid packaging, automotive products, coatings, water treatment, refrigerants, residential and commercial construction, as well as other durable and non-durable goods.
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