LS Investment Advisors LLC Acquires 8,831 Shares of Graco Inc. (GGG)

LS Investment Advisors LLC grew its holdings in Graco Inc. (NYSE:GGG) by 199.9% in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 13,248 shares of the industrial products company’s stock after buying an additional 8,831 shares during the quarter. LS Investment Advisors LLC’s holdings in Graco were worth $599,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Other hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. Cardinal Capital Management raised its stake in shares of Graco by 6.8% in the 3rd quarter. Cardinal Capital Management now owns 7,621 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $942,000 after buying an additional 488 shares in the last quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio raised its stake in shares of Graco by 4.9% in the 3rd quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 108,820 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $13,460,000 after buying an additional 5,072 shares in the last quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. raised its stake in shares of Graco by 6.3% in the 3rd quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 348,478 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $43,103,000 after buying an additional 20,740 shares in the last quarter. Conestoga Capital Advisors LLC raised its stake in shares of Graco by 24.3% in the 3rd quarter. Conestoga Capital Advisors LLC now owns 26,179 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $3,238,000 after buying an additional 5,126 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Confluence Investment Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Graco by 195.2% in the 4th quarter. Confluence Investment Management LLC now owns 2,347,351 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $106,147,000 after buying an additional 1,552,175 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 36.93% of the company’s stock.

In other Graco news, VP Karen Park Gallivan sold 15,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $132.00, for a total transaction of $1,980,000.00. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 30,060 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,967,920. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, VP Caroline M. Chambers sold 10,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $131.56, for a total transaction of $1,315,600.00. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 15,191 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,998,527.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 101,689 shares of company stock valued at $7,961,734 in the last quarter. 5.70% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Shares of Graco Inc. (NYSE GGG) opened at $43.90 on Friday. The stock has a market cap of $7,292.97, a PE ratio of 30.21, a P/E/G ratio of 2.31 and a beta of 1.15. The company has a current ratio of 2.70, a quick ratio of 1.67 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.31. Graco Inc. has a 1 year low of $29.70 and a 1 year high of $49.69.

Graco (NYSE:GGG) last announced its earnings results on Monday, January 29th. The industrial products company reported $0.34 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.36 by ($0.02). The firm had revenue of $374.90 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $369.53 million. Graco had a return on equity of 40.08% and a net margin of 17.12%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $1.00 EPS. analysts expect that Graco Inc. will post 1.78 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, February 7th. Investors of record on Monday, January 22nd were given a dividend of $0.3975 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, January 19th. This represents a $1.59 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.62%. This is a boost from Graco’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.36. Graco’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 36.47%.

A number of equities analysts have recently issued reports on GGG shares. Deutsche Bank upgraded shares of Graco from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $55.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, January 23rd. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Graco from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $52.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Saturday, February 3rd. Royal Bank of Canada reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $49.00 target price on shares of Graco in a research report on Thursday, January 4th. Oppenheimer reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Graco in a research report on Thursday, December 28th. Finally, SunTrust Banks reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $42.67 target price on shares of Graco in a research report on Friday, October 27th. Ten research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the stock. Graco presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $47.33.

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Graco Company Profile

Graco Inc designs, manufactures and markets systems and equipment used to move, measure, control, dispense and spray fluid and powder materials. The Company specializes in equipment for applications that involve materials with viscosities, materials with abrasive or corrosive properties, and multiple-component materials that require ratio control.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Graco (NYSE:GGG)

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