News headlines about Stepan (NYSE:SCL) have been trending somewhat positive this week, according to Accern Sentiment Analysis. The research firm ranks the sentiment of media coverage by reviewing more than twenty million blog and news sources in real time. Accern ranks coverage of companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. Stepan earned a media sentiment score of 0.16 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned news headlines about the basic materials company an impact score of 43.3074601279246 out of 100, meaning that recent media coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the company’s share price in the near term.

Shares of Stepan (NYSE:SCL) opened at $83.11 on Friday. Stepan has a one year low of $68.51 and a one year high of $92.97. The company has a current ratio of 2.64, a quick ratio of 2.08 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38. The firm has a market cap of $1,863.07, a PE ratio of 20.08 and a beta of 1.28.

Stepan (NYSE:SCL) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 25th. The basic materials company reported $0.92 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.09 by ($0.17). Stepan had a net margin of 4.81% and a return on equity of 13.98%. The company had revenue of $487.81 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $469.75 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.06 earnings per share. Stepan’s revenue for the quarter was up 9.6% compared to the same quarter last year. research analysts predict that Stepan will post 4.3 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 15th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, November 30th will be given a $0.225 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 29th. This is a boost from Stepan’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.21. This represents a $0.90 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.08%. Stepan’s payout ratio is 21.24%.

A number of research firms have issued reports on SCL. BidaskClub cut Stepan from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Saturday, August 5th. National Bank Financial lifted their price objective on shares of Stepan from $35.00 to $36.00 in a research note on Monday, November 13th. Scotiabank upgraded shares of Stepan from an “underperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and set a $32.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, November 14th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Stepan from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, October 20th. Finally, TD Securities restated a “buy” rating and set a $33.00 price objective on shares of Stepan in a research note on Sunday, September 24th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, three have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Stepan presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $35.60.

In other Stepan news, VP Arthur W. Mergner sold 1,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $81.16, for a total value of $81,160.00. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 2,960 shares in the company, valued at $240,233.60. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, VP Frank Pacholec sold 1,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $80.10, for a total transaction of $120,150.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 49,014 shares in the company, valued at $3,926,021.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 5,650 shares of company stock worth $458,343. 13.10% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

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About Stepan

Stepan Company produces specialty and intermediate chemicals, which are sold to other manufacturers and used in a range of end products. The Company operates through three segments: Surfactants, Polymers and Specialty Products. The Company’s principal markets include manufacturers of cleaning and washing compounds (including detergents, shampoos, fabric softeners, toothpastes and household cleaners), paints, cosmetics, food, beverages, nutritional supplements, agricultural products and plastics.

Insider Buying and Selling by Quarter for Stepan (NYSE:SCL)

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