National Pension Service lessened its stake in shares of Monsanto (NYSE:MON) by 0.2% in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent filing with the SEC. The fund owned 379,472 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 722 shares during the period. National Pension Service owned about 0.09% of Monsanto worth $44,315,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other large investors also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its position in shares of Monsanto by 2.6% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 30,725,725 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $3,636,697,000 after acquiring an additional 784,418 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its position in shares of Monsanto by 6.5% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 27,898,255 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $3,302,038,000 after acquiring an additional 1,705,439 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp lifted its position in shares of Monsanto by 0.6% during the 2nd quarter. State Street Corp now owns 20,276,780 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,399,965,000 after acquiring an additional 122,814 shares during the last quarter. Capital International Investors lifted its position in shares of Monsanto by 10.3% during the 3rd quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 9,344,430 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,119,650,000 after acquiring an additional 872,377 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Northern Trust Corp lifted its position in shares of Monsanto by 0.7% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 7,092,929 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $839,519,000 after acquiring an additional 47,725 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 75.37% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Monsanto (MON) opened at $118.81 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $52,779.55, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.92, a PEG ratio of 1.71 and a beta of 1.04. Monsanto has a 1-year low of $106.97 and a 1-year high of $122.79. The company has a quick ratio of 0.79, a current ratio of 1.28 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.05.

Monsanto (NYSE:MON) last released its earnings results on Thursday, January 4th. The basic materials company reported $0.41 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.42 by ($0.01). The business had revenue of $2.66 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.77 billion. Monsanto had a net margin of 16.38% and a return on equity of 40.13%. Monsanto’s revenue for the quarter was up .3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.21 EPS. sell-side analysts expect that Monsanto will post 5.76 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, January 26th. Investors of record on Friday, January 5th will be issued a dividend of $0.54 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, January 4th. This represents a $2.16 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.82%. Monsanto’s dividend payout ratio is 39.85%.

In related news, EVP Steven Mizell sold 8,100 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, January 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $119.35, for a total transaction of $966,735.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 56,743 shares in the company, valued at $6,772,277.05. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. 0.79% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

MON has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Monsanto from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, December 11th. BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $128.00 price objective on shares of Monsanto in a research report on Thursday, October 5th. Barclays restated an “equal weight” rating and issued a $124.00 target price (up previously from $120.00) on shares of Monsanto in a report on Thursday, October 5th. Macquarie lowered Monsanto from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 4th. Finally, Deutsche Bank restated a “buy” rating on shares of Monsanto in a report on Tuesday. Eleven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $127.30.

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About Monsanto

Monsanto Company (Monsanto), along with its subsidiaries, is a provider of agricultural products for farmers. The Company provides seeds, biotechnology trait products, herbicides and digital agriculture tools to farmers. The Company operates through two segments: Seeds and Genomics, and Agricultural Productivity.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Monsanto (NYSE:MON)

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