Univar Inc (NYSE:UNVR) was the target of a large increase in short interest during the month of September. As of September 28th, there was short interest totalling 5,174,526 shares, an increase of 100.1% from the September 14th total of 2,586,430 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 1,865,616 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 2.8 days. Currently, 4.0% of the shares of the company are sold short.

A number of research analysts recently commented on the stock. Deutsche Bank reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $35.00 price target on shares of Univar in a research note on Friday, September 21st. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Univar from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, September 21st. Berenberg Bank upgraded shares of Univar from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $24.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, September 4th. Barclays decreased their target price on shares of Univar from $32.00 to $30.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a research report on Monday, August 6th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Univar from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, August 3rd. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, three have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Univar currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $30.00.

Shares of NYSE:UNVR opened at $28.19 on Thursday. Univar has a 12-month low of $25.54 and a 12-month high of $31.95. The company has a market cap of $4.34 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.28, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.86 and a beta of 1.17. The company has a current ratio of 1.65, a quick ratio of 1.08 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.21.

Univar (NYSE:UNVR) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, August 1st. The basic materials company reported $0.47 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.48 by ($0.01). Univar had a return on equity of 19.85% and a net margin of 2.19%. The business had revenue of $2.37 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.37 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.22 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.6% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts expect that Univar will post 1.69 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, Director Kerry J. Preete purchased 8,250 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, September 24th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $30.24 per share, for a total transaction of $249,480.00. Following the purchase, the director now owns 7,933 shares in the company, valued at $239,893.92. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. 0.55% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB grew its position in shares of Univar by 16.3% during the 2nd quarter. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB now owns 17,139 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $450,000 after purchasing an additional 2,400 shares in the last quarter. Kornitzer Capital Management Inc. KS lifted its holdings in shares of Univar by 0.7% during the 2nd quarter. Kornitzer Capital Management Inc. KS now owns 374,782 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $9,834,000 after acquiring an additional 2,622 shares during the period. Amalgamated Bank lifted its holdings in shares of Univar by 17.0% during the 1st quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 24,255 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $673,000 after acquiring an additional 3,533 shares during the period. Point72 Asia Hong Kong Ltd bought a new stake in shares of Univar during the 1st quarter worth approximately $109,000. Finally, NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc lifted its holdings in shares of Univar by 148.6% during the 2nd quarter. NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc now owns 8,700 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $225,000 after acquiring an additional 5,200 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 91.47% of the company’s stock.

About Univar

Univar Inc distributes commodity and specialty chemical products, and related services worldwide. It offers herbicides, fungicides, insecticides, seeds, micro and macro nutrients, horticultural products, fertilizers, and feeds; storage, packaging, and logistics services for crop protection companies, storing chemicals, feed-grade materials, and seed and equipment parties; and pest control products and equipment.

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