Cfra upgraded shares of Linde (NYSE:LIN) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Thursday morning, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. Cfra currently has $245.00 price objective on the basic materials company’s stock, up from their previous price objective of $215.00.

Several other brokerages have also recently issued reports on LIN. Morgan Stanley assumed coverage on Linde in a research note on Monday. They issued an overweight rating for the company. UBS Group lifted their price objective on Linde from $220.00 to $240.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 17th. Atlantic Securities assumed coverage on Linde in a research note on Wednesday, November 27th. They issued an overweight rating and a $250.00 price objective for the company. BMO Capital Markets lifted their price objective on Linde from $218.00 to $230.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a research note on Monday, December 2nd. Finally, Pareto Securities upgraded Linde to a hold rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 10th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $221.67.

Shares of LIN traded up $1.38 during midday trading on Thursday, hitting $222.64. The company had a trading volume of 1,279,677 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,717,718. The company’s 50-day simple moving average is $210.58 and its 200-day simple moving average is $199.95. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.21, a quick ratio of 0.75 and a current ratio of 0.90. The firm has a market capitalization of $117.40 billion, a P/E ratio of 27.49, a P/E/G ratio of 2.09 and a beta of 0.76. Linde has a 1 year low of $166.07 and a 1 year high of $227.85.

Linde (NYSE:LIN) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 13th. The basic materials company reported $1.89 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.84 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $7.08 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.95 billion. Linde had a return on equity of 10.68% and a net margin of 17.59%. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $1.46 EPS. Equities analysts predict that Linde will post 7.3 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, EVP Anne K. Roby sold 2,402 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $212.17, for a total transaction of $509,632.34. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 36,433 shares in the company, valued at $7,729,989.61. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Anne K. Roby sold 1,583 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $209.71, for a total value of $331,970.93. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 27,218 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,707,886.78. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.70% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. increased its position in Linde by 3.2% during the fourth quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 2,033,298 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $432,889,000 after buying an additional 62,671 shares during the period. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. increased its position in Linde by 535.8% during the fourth quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. now owns 1,917,660 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $410,699,000 after buying an additional 1,616,051 shares during the period. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its position in Linde by 4.3% during the third quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 1,504,232 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $291,400,000 after buying an additional 61,582 shares during the period. California Public Employees Retirement System increased its position in Linde by 7.1% during the fourth quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 1,284,150 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $273,396,000 after buying an additional 85,653 shares during the period. Finally, Mawer Investment Management Ltd. increased its position in Linde by 3.5% during the fourth quarter. Mawer Investment Management Ltd. now owns 1,169,889 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $249,069,000 after buying an additional 39,620 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 73.61% of the company’s stock.

About Linde

Linde plc operates as an industrial gas company in primarily North and South America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Asia Pacific, and South Korea. The company offers oxygen, nitrogen, argon, rare gases, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, helium, hydrogen, electronic gases, specialty gases, and acetylene.

See Also: Buy Rating

Analyst Recommendations for Linde (NYSE:LIN)

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