Unilever PLC (NYSE:UL) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued to investors on Saturday. The firm currently has a $61.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective points to a potential upside of 12.24% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Unilever plc is engaged in manufacturing of branded and packaged consumer goods, including food, detergents and personal care products. The Company also has interests in specialty chemicals. Unilever sells its products internationally. “

A number of other research firms also recently issued reports on UL. Seaport Global Securities decreased their price objective on Unilever PLC from $28.00 to $26.00 in a report on Monday, April 3rd. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) reiterated a “sell” rating on shares of Unilever PLC in a report on Friday, March 24th. J P Morgan Chase & Co reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of Unilever PLC in a report on Tuesday, March 28th. Macquarie initiated coverage on Unilever PLC in a report on Friday, March 17th. They set an “outperform” rating for the company. Finally, Barclays PLC upgraded Unilever PLC from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating in a report on Saturday, March 25th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the stock. Unilever PLC presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $43.50.

Analyst Recommendations for Unilever PLC (NYSE:UL)

Shares of Unilever PLC (NYSE UL) opened at 54.35 on Friday. Unilever PLC has a 52 week low of $38.58 and a 52 week high of $56.48. The company has a market cap of $154.34 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 26.67 and a beta of 0.90. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $54.11 and its 200-day moving average is $47.45.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, June 7th. Shareholders of record on Friday, May 5th were given a $0.383 dividend. This represents a $1.53 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.82%. This is a boost from Unilever PLC’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.35. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, May 3rd.

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A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in UL. Jarislowsky Fraser Ltd boosted its position in Unilever PLC by 0.3% in the fourth quarter. Jarislowsky Fraser Ltd now owns 10,040 shares of the company’s stock worth $408,000 after buying an additional 30 shares during the last quarter. Sunbelt Securities Inc. increased its stake in Unilever PLC by 0.7% in the first quarter. Sunbelt Securities Inc. now owns 6,501 shares of the company’s stock worth $321,000 after buying an additional 44 shares during the last quarter. Wetherby Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in Unilever PLC by 0.8% in the first quarter. Wetherby Asset Management Inc. now owns 7,130 shares of the company’s stock worth $352,000 after buying an additional 57 shares during the last quarter. HL Financial Services LLC increased its stake in Unilever PLC by 0.6% in the first quarter. HL Financial Services LLC now owns 22,811 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,126,000 after buying an additional 132 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bruderman Asset Management LLC increased its stake in Unilever PLC by 0.9% in the first quarter. Bruderman Asset Management LLC now owns 17,610 shares of the company’s stock worth $869,000 after buying an additional 153 shares during the last quarter. 8.52% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Unilever PLC Company Profile

Unilever PLC is a fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) company. The Company’s segments include Personal Care, which primarily includes sales of skin care and hair care products, deodorants and oral care products; Foods, which primarily includes sales of soups, bouillons, sauces, snacks, mayonnaise, salad dressings, margarines and spreads; Home Care, which primarily includes sales of home care products, such as powders, liquids and capsules, soap bars and a range of cleaning products, and Refreshment, which primarily includes sales of ice cream and tea-based beverages.

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