Watts Water Technologies Inc. (WTS) Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research
Watts Water Technologies Inc. (NYSE:WTS) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Wednesday.
According to Zacks, “Watts Water is poised to gain from transformation initiatives in the Americas and EMEA. Consistent focus on acquisitions, growth in operational efficiencies and further share repurchases will also help boost results. The company is persistently looking for strategic opportunities to invest in new products and markets or divest existing product lines. These are well reflected in the company’s positive record of earnings surprises in recent quarters. However, the company expects margin expansion to moderate more in the second half due to tough comparisons and ramp-up of investment spending to fund growth initiatives. Further, Watts Water remains concerned about EMEA performance given recent events and tough comparison in the fourth quarter. Fluctuation in foreign currency exchange rates, also remain a concern given that 40% of its sales are denominated in currencies other than the U.S. dollar.”
Several other research analysts have also weighed in on WTS. Northcoast Research initiated coverage on Watts Water Technologies in a report on Friday, July 8th. They set a “neutral” rating on the stock. Janney Montgomery Scott initiated coverage on Watts Water Technologies in a report on Friday, September 16th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $63.00 target price on the stock. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Watts Water Technologies has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $61.40.
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Shares of Watts Water Technologies (NYSE:WTS) traded up 0.56% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, reaching $62.85. The company had a trading volume of 50,669 shares. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $63.55 and its 200 day moving average is $60.08. Watts Water Technologies has a 12 month low of $44.51 and a 12 month high of $66.00. The company’s market capitalization is $2.15 billion.
Watts Water Technologies (NYSE:WTS) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, August 4th. The company reported $0.75 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.70 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $371.10 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $367.14 million. Watts Water Technologies had a positive return on equity of 11.85% and a negative net margin of 6.88%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 4.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.69 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts predict that Watts Water Technologies will post $2.65 earnings per share for the current year.
In related news, General Counsel Kenneth Robert Lepage sold 31,362 shares of Watts Water Technologies stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $64.53, for a total value of $2,023,789.86. Following the sale, the general counsel now owns 75,727 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,886,663.31. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, insider Elie Melhem sold 5,192 shares of Watts Water Technologies stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.44, for a total value of $324,188.48. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 32,656 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,039,040.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.40% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Watts Water Technologies by 4.2% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 2,223,809 shares of the company’s stock worth $129,559,000 after buying an additional 89,676 shares during the period. BlackRock Fund Advisors increased its position in shares of Watts Water Technologies by 2.7% in the second quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 1,796,421 shares of the company’s stock worth $104,659,000 after buying an additional 46,463 shares during the period. Impax Asset Management LTD increased its position in shares of Watts Water Technologies by 5.3% in the second quarter. Impax Asset Management LTD now owns 1,597,537 shares of the company’s stock worth $93,073,000 after buying an additional 79,740 shares during the period. Silvercrest Asset Management Group LLC increased its position in shares of Watts Water Technologies by 12.2% in the second quarter. Silvercrest Asset Management Group LLC now owns 691,113 shares of the company’s stock worth $40,265,000 after buying an additional 74,875 shares during the period. Finally, State Street Corp increased its position in shares of Watts Water Technologies by 1.2% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 541,945 shares of the company’s stock worth $31,575,000 after buying an additional 6,501 shares during the period. 81.96% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Watts Water Technologies Company Profile
Watts Water Technologies, Inc (Watts) is a supplier of products and solutions that manage and conserve the flow of fluids and energy into, through and out of buildings in the residential and commercial markets. The Company, through its subsidiary, Watts Regulator Co, is engaged in manufacturing products and systems focused on the control, conservation and quality of water, and safety of the people using it.
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