Shares of Stepan Co. (NYSE:SCL) hit a new 52-week high during trading on Tuesday . The company traded as high as $71.33 and last traded at $70.67, with a volume of 51,600 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $70.61.

A number of brokerages recently commented on SCL. Seaport Global Securities lowered Stepan from an “accumulate” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $61.00 to $63.00 in a report on Tuesday, May 3rd. TD Securities dropped their price target on Stepan from $39.00 to $37.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, August 12th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Stepan from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $65.00 price target on the stock in a report on Friday, July 8th. Finally, National Bank Financial upgraded Stepan from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $32.00 to $37.00 in a report on Monday, August 15th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the stock. Stepan has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $47.20.

The stock has a market capitalization of $1.59 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.41. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $64.37 and a 200-day moving average price of $57.81.

Stepan (NYSE:SCL) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 20th. The company reported $1.31 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.17 by $0.14. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.91 EPS. The company earned $454.60 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $453.45 million. The business’s quarterly revenue was up .5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that Stepan Co. will post $4.31 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 15th. Investors of record on Wednesday, August 31st will be paid a $0.19 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, August 29th. This represents a $0.76 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.08%.

In related news, VP Gregory Servatius sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, June 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.40, for a total value of $61,400.00. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 24,674 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,514,983.60. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, VP Scott C. Mason sold 9,368 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, July 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.10, for a total value of $600,488.80. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 25,270 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,619,807. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

An institutional investor recently bought a new position in Stepan stock. Matarin Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in Stepan Co. (NYSE:SCL) during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund purchased 112,027 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,567,000. Matarin Capital Management LLC owned approximately 0.50% of Stepan as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Stepan Company produces specialty and intermediate chemicals, which are sold to other manufacturers and used in a variety of end products. The Company has three segments: Surfactants, Polymers and Specialty Products. The Company’s Surfactants segment offers products, which are principal ingredients in consumer and industrial cleaning products, such as detergents for washing clothes, dishes, carpets, floors and walls, as well as shampoos and body washes.

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