Nationwide Fund Advisors cut its stake in shares of Albemarle Corp. (NYSE:ALB) by 42.8% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 115,181 shares of the company’s stock after selling 86,348 shares during the period. Nationwide Fund Advisors owned approximately 0.10% of Albemarle Corp. worth $9,135,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the stock. Norges Bank purchased a new position in shares of Albemarle Corp. during the fourth quarter valued at about $52,817,000. Fjarde AP Fonden Fourth Swedish National Pension Fund raised its position in shares of Albemarle Corp. by 8.4% in the first quarter. Fjarde AP Fonden Fourth Swedish National Pension Fund now owns 35,160 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,248,000 after buying an additional 2,721 shares during the last quarter. Jag Capital Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Albemarle Corp. during the first quarter valued at about $6,240,000. Aperio Group LLC raised its position in shares of Albemarle Corp. by 50.7% in the first quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 41,577 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,658,000 after buying an additional 13,983 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Augustine Asset Management Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Albemarle Corp. during the first quarter valued at about $237,000. 88.57% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Albemarle Corp. (NYSE:ALB) traded down 0.68% during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $77.11. 634,367 shares of the company were exchanged. Albemarle Corp. has a 52-week low of $41.50 and a 52-week high of $87.29. The stock has a market capitalization of $8.67 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 56.78 and a beta of 1.87. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $81.31 and its 200 day moving average price is $75.32.

Albemarle Corp. (NYSE:ALB) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $1.09 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.01 by $0.08. The firm had revenue of $669.30 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $860.40 million. Albemarle Corp. had a net margin of 4.54% and a return on equity of 14.52%. The firm’s revenue was down 6.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.73 EPS. On average, equities analysts predict that Albemarle Corp. will post $3.47 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 3rd. Stockholders of record on Thursday, September 15th will be given a $0.305 dividend. This represents a $1.22 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.57%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, September 13th. Albemarle Corp.’s payout ratio is currently 89.05%.

Several equities research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Nomura reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $85.00 target price on shares of Albemarle Corp. in a research note on Monday, May 23rd. Morgan Stanley reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Albemarle Corp. in a research note on Thursday, June 16th. Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $94.00 target price (up previously from $84.00) on shares of Albemarle Corp. in a research note on Monday, June 20th. Citigroup Inc. reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $89.00 target price on shares of Albemarle Corp. in a research note on Wednesday, June 29th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Albemarle Corp. from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, July 18th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $80.00.

In other news, CEO Luther C. Iv Kissam sold 50,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $83.19, for a total value of $4,159,500.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 233,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $19,383,270. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director John Sherman, Jr. sold 4,300 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $82.09, for a total transaction of $352,987.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 1,500 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $123,135. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.71% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

About Albemarle Corp.

Albemarle Corporation is a developer, manufacturer and marketer of specialty chemicals across a range of end markets, including the petroleum refining, consumer electronics, energy storage, construction, automotive, steel and aerospace, lubricants, pharmaceuticals, heating, ventilation, and aluminum finishing.

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