Murphy Oil Co. (NYSE:MUR) saw some unusual options trading activity on Tuesday. Stock traders bought 5,212 call options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 747% compared to the average volume of 615 call options.

Murphy Oil (NYSE MUR) opened at $26.69 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.63, a current ratio of 1.64 and a quick ratio of 1.60. The firm has a market cap of $5,023.60, a PE ratio of -14.83 and a beta of 2.25. Murphy Oil has a 52 week low of $22.21 and a 52 week high of $35.16.

Murphy Oil (NYSE:MUR) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, January 31st. The oil and gas producer reported $0.08 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.03) by $0.11. The firm had revenue of $541.58 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $552.54 million. Murphy Oil had a negative net margin of 14.31% and a negative return on equity of 0.45%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm posted ($0.16) earnings per share. research analysts anticipate that Murphy Oil will post 0.82 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, March 5th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, February 20th will be paid a $0.25 dividend. This represents a $1.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.75%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, February 16th. Murphy Oil’s dividend payout ratio is currently -55.56%.

Several research firms have issued reports on MUR. Morgan Stanley increased their price objective on shares of Murphy Oil from $23.00 to $26.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 18th. Credit Suisse Group began coverage on shares of Murphy Oil in a report on Monday, December 11th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $30.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Murphy Oil from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, October 30th. Barclays increased their price objective on shares of Murphy Oil from $29.00 to $34.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a report on Friday, February 2nd. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of Murphy Oil from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, February 2nd. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $31.83.

In other Murphy Oil news, insider Eugene T. Coleman sold 33,435 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, February 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $28.88, for a total transaction of $965,602.80. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 57,246 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,653,264.48. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, VP John B. Gardner sold 3,783 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, November 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $27.84, for a total transaction of $105,318.72. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 6.89% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. State Street Corp raised its stake in Murphy Oil by 4.6% during the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 11,373,872 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock worth $291,513,000 after purchasing an additional 503,190 shares during the period. Pzena Investment Management LLC raised its stake in Murphy Oil by 1.0% during the third quarter. Pzena Investment Management LLC now owns 9,609,282 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock worth $255,223,000 after purchasing an additional 98,500 shares during the period. Wedge Capital Management L L P NC raised its stake in Murphy Oil by 4.4% during the third quarter. Wedge Capital Management L L P NC now owns 6,207,620 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock worth $164,874,000 after purchasing an additional 260,467 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its stake in Murphy Oil by 2.3% during the third quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 5,060,780 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock worth $134,421,000 after purchasing an additional 113,685 shares during the period. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its stake in Murphy Oil by 19.5% during the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 3,326,099 shares of the oil and gas producer’s stock worth $88,342,000 after purchasing an additional 541,618 shares during the period. 96.96% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Murphy Oil

Murphy Oil Corporation (Murphy) is an oil and gas exploration and production company. The Company’s exploration and production business explores for and produces crude oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids across the world. Its exploration and production activities are subdivided into four geographic segments: the United States, Canada, Malaysia and all other countries.

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