Graco Inc. (NYSE:GGG) gapped up prior to trading on Friday . The stock had previously closed at $77.17, but opened at $77.60. Graco shares last traded at $79.53, with a volume of 85,381 shares traded.

GGG has been the subject of several research reports. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Graco from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $91.00 price target for the company in a research report on Wednesday, March 23rd. Seaport Global Securities cut shares of Graco from an “accumulate” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $80.00 price target for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, March 22nd. Citigroup Inc. cut shares of Graco to a “neutral” rating and set a $80.00 price target for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, March 22nd. They noted that the move was a valuation call. SunTrust Banks Inc. cut shares of Graco from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $85.00 price target for the company. in a research report on Thursday, April 14th. Finally, Sidoti cut shares of Graco from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $92.00 price target for the company. in a research report on Monday, April 4th. Eight analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $82.88.

The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $79.58 and its 200 day moving average price is $77.54. The company has a market cap of $4.42 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.59.

Graco (NYSE:GGG) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 20th. The company reported $0.70 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.76 by $0.06. The business had revenue of $304.90 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $308.83 million. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.14 EPS. Graco’s revenue was down .5% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Graco Inc. will post $3.60 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, August 3rd. Shareholders of record on Monday, July 18th will be given a dividend of $0.33 per share. This represents a $1.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.66%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, July 14th.

In related news, Director Sant R. William Van sold 14,700 shares of Graco stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $81.00, for a total value of $1,190,700.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 6,800 shares in the company, valued at $550,800. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, VP Charles L. Rescorla sold 22,500 shares of Graco stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, June 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $81.73, for a total transaction of $1,838,925.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 83,987 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $6,864,257.51. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Other hedge funds and institutional investors have made changes to their positions in the company. Dorsey & Whitney Trust CO LLC boosted its position in shares of Graco by 0.7% in the fourth quarter. Dorsey & Whitney Trust CO LLC now owns 95,384 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,874,000 after buying an additional 675 shares during the period. Bragg Financial Advisors Inc boosted its position in shares of Graco by 26.5% in the fourth quarter. Bragg Financial Advisors Inc now owns 36,780 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,651,000 after buying an additional 7,705 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can boosted its position in shares of Graco by 304.8% in the fourth quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 52,675 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,797,000 after buying an additional 39,661 shares during the period. Liberty Mutual Group Asset Management Inc. boosted its position in shares of Graco by 51.4% in the fourth quarter. Liberty Mutual Group Asset Management Inc. now owns 37,220 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,682,000 after buying an additional 12,628 shares during the period. Finally, New Amsterdam Partners LLC NY boosted its position in shares of Graco by 142.5% in the fourth quarter. New Amsterdam Partners LLC NY now owns 272,201 shares of the company’s stock worth $19,618,000 after buying an additional 159,948 shares during the period.

Graco Inc (Graco) is a manufacturing company. The Company designs, manufactures and markets equipment to pump, meter, mix and dispense a variety of fluids and coatings. Its equipment is used in the construction, automotive, industrial, mining, oil and natural gas, process, public works and other industries.

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