Monsanto Co. (NYSE:MON) shares saw strong trading volume on Monday . 6,203,344 shares changed hands during mid-day trading, an increase of 24% from the previous session’s volume of 5,014,424 shares.The stock last traded at $106.38 and had previously closed at $103.45.

Several analysts recently issued reports on the stock. TheStreet raised shares of Monsanto to a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, May 26th. Vetr downgraded shares of Monsanto from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $117.33 price target for the company. in a research report on Monday, May 30th. Deutsche Bank AG reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $100.00 price target on shares of Monsanto in a research report on Wednesday, June 1st. Morgan Stanley reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Monsanto in a research report on Saturday, April 9th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Monsanto from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 3rd. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and sixteen have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $108.37.

The firm has a market capitalization of $46.58 billion and a P/E ratio of 46.85. The company has a 50-day moving average of $105.80 and a 200 day moving average of $95.37.

Monsanto (NYSE:MON) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, June 29th. The company reported $2.17 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $2.40 by $0.23. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $2.39 earnings per share. The company earned $4.19 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.49 billion. Monsanto’s revenue was down 8.5% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Monsanto Co. will post $4.46 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, July 29th. Investors of record on Friday, July 8th will be given a dividend of $0.54 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, July 6th. This represents a $2.16 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.03%.

In related news, COO Brett D. Begemann sold 27,980 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, July 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $103.62, for a total transaction of $2,899,287.60. Following the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 102,480 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,618,977.60. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, CEO Michael K. Stern sold 12,797 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $101.77, for a total value of $1,302,350.69. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 21,583 shares in the company, valued at $2,196,501.91. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Several large investors have added to or reduced their stakes in MON. Baillie Gifford & Co. boosted its stake in Monsanto by 3.6% in the fourth quarter. Baillie Gifford & Co. now owns 3,294,874 shares of the company’s stock valued at $324,610,000 after buying an additional 116,004 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its position in Monsanto by 5.2% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 982,183 shares of the company’s stock worth $96,767,000 after buying an additional 48,863 shares in the last quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas increased its position in Monsanto by 1,555.2% in the fourth quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 421,901 shares of the company’s stock worth $41,566,000 after buying an additional 396,412 shares in the last quarter. Rit Capital Partners PLC increased its position in Monsanto by 86.5% in the fourth quarter. Rit Capital Partners PLC now owns 360,000 shares of the company’s stock worth $35,467,000 after buying an additional 167,000 shares in the last quarter. Finally, US Bancorp DE increased its position in Monsanto by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. US Bancorp DE now owns 344,555 shares of the company’s stock worth $33,946,000 after buying an additional 1,297 shares in the last quarter.

Monsanto Company (Monsanto) is a provider of agricultural products for farmers. The Company’s seeds, biotechnology trait products, and herbicides provide farmers with solutions that improve productivity, reduce the costs of farming, and produce better foods for consumers and better feed for animals. It manages business in two segments: Seeds and Genomics, and Agricultural Productivity.

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