Shares of Kadant Inc. (NYSE:KAI) reached a new 52-week high on Friday . The stock traded as high as $54.80 and last traded at $54.64, with a volume of 42,064 shares. The stock had previously closed at $54.13.

Separately, Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Kadant from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday.

The firm has a 50 day moving average of $51.18 and a 200-day moving average of $44.70. The stock has a market capitalization of $593.06 million and a P/E ratio of 17.67.

Kadant (NYSE:KAI) last released its quarterly earnings data on Monday, May 2nd. The company reported $0.72 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.14. The firm had revenue of $97 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $86.37 million. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.63 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Kadant Inc. will post $3.03 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, August 11th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, July 14th will be paid a dividend of $0.19 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, July 12th. This represents a $0.76 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.39%.

In related news, Director Thomas C. Leonard sold 2,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, May 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $48.00, for a total value of $120,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 23,750 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,140,000. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Thomas C. Leonard sold 1,250 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $52.00, for a total transaction of $65,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 20,000 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,040,000. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Other hedge funds and institutional investors recently made changes to their positions in the company. Wells Fargo & Company MN raised its position in shares of Kadant by 10.2% in the fourth quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 734,293 shares of the company’s stock worth $29,821,000 after buying an additional 67,826 shares during the period. Brown Advisory Inc. raised its position in shares of Kadant by 1.4% in the fourth quarter. Brown Advisory Inc. now owns 626,025 shares of the company’s stock worth $25,423,000 after buying an additional 8,371 shares during the period. Nationwide Fund Advisors raised its position in shares of Kadant by 2.5% in the fourth quarter. Nationwide Fund Advisors now owns 65,682 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,667,000 after buying an additional 1,574 shares during the period. Dean Investment Associates LLC bought a new position in shares of Kadant during the fourth quarter worth approximately $1,830,000. Finally, Schroder Investment Management Group bought a new position in shares of Kadant during the fourth quarter worth approximately $1,657,000.

Kadant Inc is a supplier of equipment used in process industries. The process industries, including papermaking, paper recycling and oriented strand board (OSB), an engineered wood panel product used primarily in home construction. In addition, the Company manufactures granules made from papermaking byproducts.

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