Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Leggett & Platt Inc. (LEG) to Sell
Leggett & Platt Inc. (NYSE:LEG) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued on Tuesday.
According to Zacks, “Leggett is progressing well with its long-term strategy of achieving top-line growth of 4%–5% annually. The company is also enhancing its business portfolio by expanding operations in areas that provide competitive advantage while exiting the underperforming ones. The company maintains its disciplined capital allocation and remains keen on boosting shareholder value. However, the company’s significant global presence exposes it to adverse currency movements. Raw material price deflation and stiff competition also pose significant threats. These factors led the company’s top-line to decline for the fifth consecutive quarter in the preceding quarter. While the company provided a conservative sales outlook for 2016, it continues to anticipate generating record EPS, robust EBIT margin and enhanced cash flows this year. Nonetheless, estimates have been going down ahead of the company’s third quarter earnings release.”
Other equities research analysts have also recently issued research reports about the company. Raymond James Financial Inc. restated a “market perform” rating on shares of Leggett & Platt in a research note on Monday, August 1st. Citigroup Inc. cut Leggett & Platt to a “market perform” rating in a research note on Monday, August 1st. Finally, Hilliard Lyons cut Leggett & Platt from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 29th.
Shares of Leggett & Platt (NYSE:LEG) traded down 0.20% during midday trading on Tuesday, hitting $45.34. 444,780 shares of the stock traded hands. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $50.27 and its 200 day moving average price is $50.12. Leggett & Platt has a 12-month low of $36.64 and a 12-month high of $54.63. The company has a market capitalization of $6.06 billion, a PE ratio of 16.58 and a beta of 0.95.
Leggett & Platt (NYSE:LEG) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.66 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.62 by $0.04. The firm had revenue of $958.90 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1,000 million. Leggett & Platt had a return on equity of 33.71% and a net margin of 10.03%. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 3.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.53 EPS. Analysts expect that Leggett & Platt will post $2.50 EPS for the current year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 14th. Investors of record on Thursday, September 15th will be issued a dividend of $0.34 per share. This represents a $1.36 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.99%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, September 13th. Leggett & Platt’s payout ratio is presently 49.64%.
In related news, Director Judy C. Odom sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $52.51, for a total transaction of $262,550.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 58,557 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,074,828.07. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, insider Karl G. Glassman sold 20,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $52.49, for a total value of $1,049,800.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 459,850 shares in the company, valued at $24,137,526.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 3.92% of the company’s stock.
Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of LEG. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in Leggett & Platt by 2.3% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 15,159,474 shares of the company’s stock worth $774,801,000 after buying an additional 334,149 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors raised its position in shares of Leggett & Platt by 4.5% in the second quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 4,932,447 shares of the company’s stock worth $252,097,000 after buying an additional 210,184 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. raised its position in shares of Leggett & Platt by 2.9% in the first quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 3,777,136 shares of the company’s stock worth $182,813,000 after buying an additional 106,026 shares in the last quarter. Thomaspartners Inc. raised its position in shares of Leggett & Platt by 3.1% in the second quarter. Thomaspartners Inc. now owns 3,153,026 shares of the company’s stock worth $161,151,000 after buying an additional 94,996 shares in the last quarter. Finally, US Bancorp DE raised its position in shares of Leggett & Platt by 3.1% in the second quarter. US Bancorp DE now owns 1,968,292 shares of the company’s stock worth $100,599,000 after buying an additional 60,074 shares in the last quarter. 66.43% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
About Leggett & Platt
Leggett & Platt, Incorporated is a manufacturer of engineered components and products found in homes, offices, automobiles and commercial aircraft. The Company operates in four segments: Residential Furnishings, Commercial Products, Industrial Materials and Specialized Products. The Residential Furnishings segment manufactures steel coiled bedsprings.
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