Greif Inc. (NYSE:GEF) shares gapped up prior to trading on Thursday . The stock had previously closed at $39.06, but opened at $39.10. Greif shares last traded at $39.68, with a volume of 96,005 shares changing hands.

A number of research analysts recently commented on the company. TheStreet upgraded Greif from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 8th. BMO Capital Markets cut Greif from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $36.00 price target on the stock. in a research note on Wednesday, May 25th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Robert W. Baird upped their price target on Greif from $33.00 to $37.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Monday, April 4th. Deutsche Bank AG restated a “market perform” rating and set a $36.00 price target on shares of Greif in a research note on Wednesday, June 29th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut Greif from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, June 13th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the stock. Greif currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $39.40.

The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $38.47 and a 200-day moving average price of $32.54. The company has a market cap of $1.90 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 45.98.

Greif (NYSE:GEF) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, June 8th. The company reported $0.47 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.57 by $0.10. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.53 earnings per share. The firm had revenue of $839.60 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $836.77 million. Greif’s quarterly revenue was down 8.3% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Greif Inc. will post $2.29 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, July 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, June 20th were paid a $0.42 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, June 16th. This represents a $1.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.23%.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in GEF. New York State Common Retirement Fund boosted its stake in Greif by 70.0% in the fourth quarter. New York State Common Retirement Fund now owns 170,970 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,268,000 after buying an additional 70,388 shares during the last quarter. Systematic Financial Management LP boosted its stake in Greif by 67.9% in the fourth quarter. Systematic Financial Management LP now owns 111,980 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,450,000 after buying an additional 45,290 shares during the last quarter. Burney Co. boosted its stake in Greif by 28.7% in the fourth quarter. Burney Co. now owns 45,427 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,444,000 after buying an additional 10,135 shares during the last quarter. Nationwide Fund Advisors boosted its stake in Greif by 5.8% in the fourth quarter. Nationwide Fund Advisors now owns 66,148 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,038,000 after buying an additional 3,649 shares during the last quarter. Finally, California State Teachers Retirement System boosted its stake in Greif by 1.6% in the fourth quarter. California State Teachers Retirement System now owns 57,035 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,757,000 after buying an additional 885 shares during the last quarter.

Greif, Inc is a producer of industrial packaging products and services. The Company’s products include steel, fiber and plastic drums, rigid intermediate bulk containers, closure systems, transit protection products, water bottles and reconditioned industrial containers, and offers services, such as container life cycle management, blending, filling, logistics, warehousing and other packaging services.

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