Unilever Receives “Neutral” Rating from Zacks (UL)
Unilever (NYSE:UL)‘s stock had its “neutral” rating restated by Zacks in a note issued to investors on Wednesday, AnalystRatings.Net reports. They currently have a $42.00 price target on the stock. Zacks‘ target price suggests a potential upside of 3.93% from the stock’s previous close.
Zacks‘ analyst wrote, “Unilever reported sluggish results in fourth quarter 2013 with organic sales growth of 4.1%, driven by organic volume and pricing gains of 2.7% and 1.4%, respectively. However, it was lower than 7.8% growth recorded last year due to a slowdown in emerging markets operations. The company’s operations are also impacted by economic uncertainty and currency depreciation. Though the company’s sales are pressurized by the macroeconomic headwinds, Unilever is consistently focusing on improving its products through innovation in all the categories. Unilever is also quite optimistic about delivering solid operating margin growth in 2014, driven by its cost savings programs. However, the company anticipates volatility in the external environment and the slowdown in emerging markets to persist in 2014. In addition, the company expects low- to mid-single digit commodity cost inflation in 2014, largely due to the effect of weaker currencies. We therefore prefer to remain Neutral on the stock.”
A number of other analysts have also recently weighed in on UL. Analysts at Societe Generale downgraded shares of Unilever to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 30th. Separately, analysts at BTIG Research initiated coverage on shares of Unilever in a research note on Wednesday, January 29th. They set a “neutral” rating on the stock. Finally, analysts at RBC Capital upgraded shares of Unilever from an “underperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 22nd. They now have a $32.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $30.00. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $36.88.
Unilever (NYSE:UL) traded up 0.42% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $40.579. 444,320 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Unilever has a one year low of $37.40 and a one year high of $43.88. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $39.76 and its 200-day moving average is $39.74. The company has a market cap of $115.2 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.80.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Wednesday, March 12th. Stockholders of record on Friday, February 7th will be paid a dividend of $0.3654 per share. This represents a $1.46 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.62%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, February 5th.
Unilever plc is one of the parent companies of the Unilever group (NYSE:UL), which is a supplier of consumer goods.
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