Praxair Inc. (NYSE:PX)’s share price 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 trading hands.

Several equities analysts have recently weighed in on PX shares. Jefferies Group reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Praxair in a report on Wednesday, July 6th. Zacks Investment Research raised Praxair from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, April 5th. Citigroup Inc. increased their price target on Praxair from $120.00 to $123.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday. Deutsche Bank AG cut Praxair from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and increased their price target for the company from $114.00 to $120.00 in a report on Monday, April 4th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group AG started coverage on Praxair in a report on Thursday, March 24th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $117.00 price target on the stock. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. Praxair currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $115.46.

The firm has a market capitalization of $33.94 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.06. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $112.62 and a 200 day moving average price of $109.31.

Praxair (NYSE:PX) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Friday, April 29th. The company reported $1.28 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.27 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $2.51 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.49 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $1.43 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 9.0% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Praxair Inc. will post $5.56 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other news, Director Robert L. Wood sold 6,550 shares of Praxair stock in a transaction 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 directly owns 21,018 shares in the company, valued at $2,403,198.12. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link.

A number of hedge funds and institutional investors have bought and sold shares of PX. Boys Arnold & Co. Inc. increased its position in Praxair by 90.9% in the fourth quarter. Boys Arnold & Co. Inc. now owns 12,524 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,282,000 after buying an additional 5,962 shares in the last quarter. Profund Advisors LLC increased its position in Praxair by 6.4% in the fourth quarter. Profund Advisors LLC now owns 13,647 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,397,000 after buying an additional 823 shares in the last quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. increased its position in Praxair by 154.8% in the fourth quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. now owns 13,828 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,415,000 after buying an additional 8,400 shares in the last quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. increased its position in Praxair by 36.8% in the fourth quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 15,241 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,561,000 after buying an additional 4,102 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Engineers Gate Manager LP acquired a new position in Praxair during the fourth quarter worth about $1,843,000.

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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