Sonoco Products Co. (NYSE:SON)’s share price reached a new 52-week high during trading on Thursday . The stock traded as high as $50.70 and last traded at $50.20, with a volume of 327,397 shares. The stock had previously closed at $49.92.

Several research firms recently commented on SON. Bank of America Corp. cut Sonoco Products from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, March 18th. Vertical Research cut Sonoco Products from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, March 18th. Vertical Group cut Sonoco Products from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Sunday, March 20th. DA Davidson cut Sonoco Products from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $42.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Monday, April 11th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Argus reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Sonoco Products in a report on Wednesday, April 27th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $45.33.

The firm has a market capitalization of $5.12 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.20. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $47.93 and its 200-day moving average price is $45.05.

Sonoco Products (NYSE:SON) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 21st. The company reported $0.65 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.60 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $1.23 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.21 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $0.54 earnings per share. Sonoco Products’s revenue was up 1.7% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Sonoco Products Co. will post $2.71 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, May 13th were issued a dividend of $0.37 per share. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, May 11th. This is an increase from Sonoco Products’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.35. This represents a $1.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.91%.

In other news, VP Vicki B. Arthur sold 4,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, April 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.00, for a total transaction of $192,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 25,553 shares in the company, valued at $1,226,544. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, VP James A. Harrell III sold 1,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $50.00, for a total value of $50,000.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 3,811 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $190,550. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Other hedge funds and institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA raised its position in shares of Sonoco Products by 2,730.2% in the fourth quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 25,217 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,031,000 after buying an additional 24,326 shares during the last quarter. Hallmark Capital Management Inc. raised its position in shares of Sonoco Products by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. Hallmark Capital Management Inc. now owns 25,270 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,033,000 after buying an additional 110 shares during the last quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS raised its position in shares of Sonoco Products by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 29,265 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,196,000 after buying an additional 128 shares during the last quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. raised its position in shares of Sonoco Products by 6.7% in the fourth quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 43,704 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,786,000 after buying an additional 2,743 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bank of Montreal Can raised its position in shares of Sonoco Products by 13.5% in the fourth quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 51,200 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,093,000 after buying an additional 6,087 shares during the last quarter.

Sonoco Products Company (Sonoco) is a manufacturer of industrial and consumer packaging products and a provider of packaging services. The Company operates in four segments: Consumer Packaging, Paper and Industrial Converted Products, Display and Packaging, and Protective Solutions. Its Consumer Packaging segment’s products and services include round composite cans, aluminum, steel and peelable membrane easy-open closures for composite and metal cans; plastic bottles, cups and trays, and printed flexible packaging and global brand management.

Get Analysts' Upgrades and Downgrades Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of analysts' upgrades, downgrades and new coverage with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.