Praxair Inc. (NYSE:PX) shares gapped up before the market opened on Thursday . The stock had previously closed at $117.38, but opened at $117.55. Praxair shares last traded at $118.39, with a volume of 456,358 shares traded.

A number of research analysts have issued reports on PX shares. Citigroup Inc. upped their price target on shares of Praxair from $106.00 to $121.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Monday, April 18th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Praxair from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $126.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Monday, April 11th. Deutsche Bank AG lowered shares of Praxair from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and upped their price target for the company from $114.00 to $120.00 in a research note on Monday, April 4th. Credit Suisse Group AG started coverage on shares of Praxair in a research note on Thursday, March 24th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $117.00 price target on the stock. Finally, TheStreet upgraded shares of Praxair from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, April 1st. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. Praxair has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $115.31.

The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $112.37 and a 200 day moving average price of $109.20. The stock has a market cap of $33.76 billion and a PE ratio of 22.94.

Praxair (NYSE:PX) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, April 29th. The company reported $1.28 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.27 by $0.01. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.43 EPS. The firm earned $2.51 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.49 billion. The firm’s revenue was down 9.0% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts anticipate that Praxair Inc. will post $5.56 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, June 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, June 7th were given a dividend of $0.75 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, June 3rd. This represents a $3.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.53%.

In other news, Director Robert L. Wood sold 6,550 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $114.34, for a total transaction of $748,927.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 21,018 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,403,198.12. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link.

Several hedge funds recently modified their holdings of PX. Creative Planning increased its stake in shares of Praxair by 26.0% in the fourth quarter. Creative Planning now owns 21,220 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,173,000 after buying an additional 4,378 shares in the last quarter. First Trust Advisors LP increased its stake in shares of Praxair by 17.7% in the fourth quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 111,854 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,454,000 after buying an additional 16,817 shares in the last quarter. Beach Investment Counsel Inc. PA increased its stake in shares of Praxair by 35.8% in the fourth quarter. Beach Investment Counsel Inc. PA now owns 41,426 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,242,000 after buying an additional 10,925 shares in the last quarter. Chartwell Investment Partners LLC increased its stake in shares of Praxair by 32.5% in the fourth quarter. Chartwell Investment Partners LLC now owns 14,385 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,473,000 after buying an additional 3,525 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Princeton Alpha Management LP bought a new stake in shares of Praxair during the fourth quarter valued at $2,036,000.

Praxair, Inc is an industrial gas supplier in North and South America, Asia and Europe. The Company’s operations are organized into five segments, four of which have been determined on a geographic basis of segmentation: North America, Europe, South America and Asia. In addition, the Company operates its surface technologies business through its subsidiary, Praxair Surface Technologies, Inc, which represents the fifth segment.

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