Investors bought shares of W.W. Grainger Inc. (NYSE:GWW) on weakness during trading hours on Friday. $77.20 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $25.38 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $51.82 million into the stock. Of all equities tracked, W.W. Grainger had the 21st highest net in-flow for the day. W.W. Grainger traded down ($1.37) for the day and closed at $218.85

GWW has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. Morgan Stanley upped their price target on shares of W.W. Grainger from $189.00 to $201.00 in a report on Thursday, April 7th. Credit Suisse Group AG assumed coverage on shares of W.W. Grainger in a report on Friday, June 17th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $222.00 price target on the stock. Deutsche Bank AG reissued a “sell” rating and set a $174.00 target price on shares of W.W. Grainger in a report on Monday, April 18th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of W.W. Grainger from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $256.00 target price on the stock in a report on Thursday, April 21st. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reissued a “buy” rating on shares of W.W. Grainger in a report on Friday, June 10th. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $224.13.

The stock has a market capitalization of $13.33 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.90. The company has a 50-day moving average of $222.83 and a 200-day moving average of $220.59.

W.W. Grainger (NYSE:GWW) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 19th. The company reported $2.89 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $3.17 by $0.28. The business earned $2.60 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.58 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $3.27 EPS. Equities research analysts expect that W.W. Grainger Inc. will post $11.51 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 8th will be issued a dividend of $1.22 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, August 4th. This represents a $4.88 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.23%.

In other W.W. Grainger news, VP Joseph C. High sold 1,722 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, July 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $220.00, for a total transaction of $378,840.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 7,531 shares in the company, valued at $1,656,820. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, VP Laura D. Brown sold 1,776 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $225.61, for a total value of $400,683.36. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 13,011 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,935,411.71. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of institutional investors recently made changes to their positions in GWW. Birch Hill Investment Advisors LLC increased its position in shares of W.W. Grainger by 51.5% in the fourth quarter. Birch Hill Investment Advisors LLC now owns 54,321 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,005,000 after buying an additional 18,470 shares during the period. Stephens Inc. AR increased its stake in shares of W.W. Grainger by 624.3% in the fourth quarter. Stephens Inc. AR now owns 7,685 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,557,000 after buying an additional 6,624 shares during the last quarter. Dean Investment Associates LLC increased its stake in shares of W.W. Grainger by 168.5% in the fourth quarter. Dean Investment Associates LLC now owns 5,703 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,155,000 after buying an additional 3,579 shares during the last quarter. I.G. Investment Management LTD. increased its stake in shares of W.W. Grainger by 63.9% in the fourth quarter. I.G. Investment Management LTD. now owns 50,205 shares of the company’s stock valued at $10,171,000 after buying an additional 19,566 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Advisors Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of W.W. Grainger by 70.5% in the fourth quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. now owns 10,966 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,222,000 after buying an additional 4,534 shares during the last quarter.

W.W. Grainger, Inc (Grainger) is a distributor of maintenance, repair and operating (MRO) supplies and other related products and services. The Company offers its products and services to businesses and institutions in the United States and Canada, with presence also in Europe, Asia and Latin America.

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