Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Martin Marietta Materials, Inc. (NYSE:MLM) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report released on Tuesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Martin Marietta is a leading supplier of construction aggregates used for construction of highways, infrastructure projects and residential, commercial and industrial building development. The company’s string of acquisitions, divestitures and attractive shareholder returns are encouraging. Increased activities in the non-residential and residential markets can be expected to boost demand. However, abnormally wet weather conditions in many markets are marring Martin Marietta’s prospects. Also, shares of Martin Marietta underperformed its industry year to date.”

MLM has been the topic of several other reports. BidaskClub raised shares of Martin Marietta Materials from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Thursday, June 15th. Jefferies Group LLC set a $166.00 price objective on shares of Martin Marietta Materials and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Monday, August 21st. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company. Martin Marietta Materials has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $220.57.

Shares of Martin Marietta Materials (NYSE MLM) opened at 199.20 on Tuesday. Martin Marietta Materials has a 52 week low of $167.06 and a 52 week high of $244.32. The firm has a market cap of $12.52 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.67 and a beta of 1.15. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $207.40 and its 200-day moving average is $219.07.

Martin Marietta Materials (NYSE:MLM) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, August 1st. The construction company reported $2.25 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.38 by ($0.13). The company had revenue of $996.30 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.01 billion. Martin Marietta Materials had a net margin of 11.19% and a return on equity of 10.69%. Martin Marietta Materials’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.90 earnings per share. Equities research analysts predict that Martin Marietta Materials will post $7.14 EPS for the current year.

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The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 29th. Investors of record on Tuesday, September 5th will be given a dividend of $0.44 per share. This represents a $1.76 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.88%. This is a positive change from Martin Marietta Materials’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.42. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, August 31st. Martin Marietta Materials’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 25.29%.

In other Martin Marietta Materials news, Director John J. Koraleski purchased 500 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 18th. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $198.37 per share, with a total value of $99,185.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 1,439 shares in the company, valued at $285,454.43. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 8.45% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale increased its holdings in Martin Marietta Materials by 80.2% in the 1st quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale now owns 5,468 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $1,223,000 after buying an additional 2,433 shares during the period. Suntrust Banks Inc. increased its holdings in Martin Marietta Materials by 52.4% in the 1st quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 1,695 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $369,000 after buying an additional 583 shares during the period. Comerica Bank increased its holdings in Martin Marietta Materials by 2.2% in the 1st quarter. Comerica Bank now owns 22,637 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $5,056,000 after buying an additional 486 shares during the period. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. increased its holdings in Martin Marietta Materials by 1.7% in the 1st quarter. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. now owns 32,621 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $7,120,000 after buying an additional 550 shares during the period. Finally, Swiss National Bank increased its holdings in Martin Marietta Materials by 27.7% in the 1st quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 213,750 shares of the construction company’s stock valued at $46,651,000 after buying an additional 46,300 shares during the period. 95.80% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Martin Marietta Materials

Martin Marietta Materials, Inc is a supplier of aggregates products (crushed stone, sand, and gravel) used for the construction of infrastructure, nonresidential, and residential projects. Aggregates products are also used for railroad ballast and in agricultural, utility and environmental applications.

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Analyst Recommendations for Martin Marietta Materials (NYSE:MLM)

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