Murphy Oil Corp. (NYSE:MUR) shares shot up 8.1% during mid-day trading on Tuesday . The company traded as high as $32.37 and last traded at $32.14, with a volume of 2,498,099 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $29.74.

A number of research firms recently issued reports on MUR. Barclays PLC upgraded Murphy Oil Corp. from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and boosted their price objective for the company from $33.00 to $42.00 in a research report on Wednesday. JPMorgan Chase & Co. restated a “hold” rating on shares of Murphy Oil Corp. in a research report on Thursday, June 30th. Raymond James Financial Inc. upgraded Murphy Oil Corp. from an “underperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Monday, June 20th. Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Murphy Oil Corp. in a research note on Sunday, May 8th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. lifted their target price on Murphy Oil Corp. from $19.00 to $20.00 and gave the company a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, May 5th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have given a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $30.23.

The company’s market cap is $5.49 billion. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $30.76 and a 200 day moving average price of $25.51.

Murphy Oil Corp. (NYSE:MUR) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 4th. The company reported ($0.66) earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of ($0.71) by $0.05. The company earned $430.30 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $446.29 million. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 53.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.02 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts anticipate that Murphy Oil Corp. will post ($1.68) earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, VP John B. Gardner sold 1,246 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $29.39, for a total transaction of $36,619.94. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, VP Allan J. Misner sold 7,163 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $29.39, for a total value of $210,520.57. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 100 shares in the company, valued at $2,939. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of large investors have added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BOKF NA raised its stake in Murphy Oil Corp. by 45.0% in the fourth quarter. BOKF NA now owns 85,301 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,915,000 after buying an additional 26,466 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in Murphy Oil Corp. by 1.6% in the fourth quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 15,402,419 shares of the company’s stock worth $345,785,000 after buying an additional 247,212 shares during the period. Bank of The Ozarks raised its stake in Murphy Oil Corp. by 1.0% in the fourth quarter. Bank of The Ozarks now owns 888,458 shares of the company’s stock worth $19,946,000 after buying an additional 8,705 shares during the period. TD Asset Management Inc. raised its stake in Murphy Oil Corp. by 1.5% in the fourth quarter. TD Asset Management Inc. now owns 75,128 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,687,000 after buying an additional 1,100 shares during the period. Finally, US Bancorp DE raised its stake in Murphy Oil Corp. by 17.2% in the fourth quarter. US Bancorp DE now owns 108,227 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,430,000 after buying an additional 15,872 shares during the period.

Murphy Oil Corporation is an oil and gas exploration and production company. The Company’s exploration and production business explores for and produces crude oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids across the world. The Company’s exploration and production activities are subdivided into four geographic segments, including the United States, Canada, Malaysia and all other countries.

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