Stepan Company (NYSE:SCL) has received an average recommendation of “Hold” from the ten brokerages that are currently covering the company, MarketBeat.com reports. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, three have issued a hold recommendation, two have issued a buy recommendation and one has issued a strong buy recommendation on the company. The average 1-year target price among analysts that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $35.60.

SCL has been the topic of several research analyst reports. KeyCorp restated a “hold” rating on shares of Stepan in a research report on Friday, September 1st. Scotiabank upgraded shares of Stepan from an “underperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and set a $32.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, November 14th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Stepan from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Friday, October 20th. National Bank Financial upgraded shares of Stepan from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and boosted their target price for the stock from $27.00 to $35.00 in a research report on Wednesday, October 11th. Finally, TD Securities restated a “buy” rating and set a $33.00 target price on shares of Stepan in a research report on Sunday, September 24th.

In other news, VP Debra Stefaniak sold 818 shares of Stepan stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $82.66, for a total transaction of $67,615.88. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 6,616 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $546,878.56. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, VP Arthur W. Mergner sold 1,000 shares of Stepan stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $81.16, for a total value of $81,160.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 2,960 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $240,233.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 4,150 shares of company stock valued at $338,193 in the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 13.10% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Advisor Group Inc. raised its stake in shares of Stepan by 455.2% during the 2nd quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 1,177 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $102,000 after buying an additional 965 shares during the last quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC raised its stake in Stepan by 224.9% in the 2nd quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 1,589 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $138,000 after purchasing an additional 1,100 shares during the last quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its stake in Stepan by 17.6% in the 2nd quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 2,254 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $196,000 after purchasing an additional 337 shares during the last quarter. Amalgamated Bank raised its stake in Stepan by 3.9% in the 2nd quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 2,757 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $240,000 after purchasing an additional 104 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Suntrust Banks Inc. raised its stake in Stepan by 4.7% in the 2nd quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 3,275 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $285,000 after purchasing an additional 146 shares during the last quarter. 63.21% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of Stepan (NYSE:SCL) traded up $1.62 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $79.84. 323,800 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 74,496. The stock has a market cap of $1,809.46, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.50 and a beta of 1.29. Stepan has a 52 week low of $68.51 and a 52 week high of $92.97. The company has a quick ratio of 2.08, a current ratio of 2.64 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38.

Stepan (NYSE:SCL) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The basic materials company reported $0.92 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.09 by ($0.17). The company had revenue of $487.81 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $469.75 million. Stepan had a return on equity of 13.98% and a net margin of 4.81%. Stepan’s revenue for the quarter was up 9.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $1.06 earnings per share. equities research analysts forecast that Stepan will post 4.3 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 15th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, November 30th will be paid a dividend of $0.225 per share. This represents a $0.90 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.13%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 29th. This is an increase from Stepan’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.21. Stepan’s payout ratio is 23.32%.

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Stepan Company Profile

Stepan Company produces specialty and intermediate chemicals, which are sold to other manufacturers and used in a range of end products. The Company operates through three segments: Surfactants, Polymers and Specialty Products. The Company’s principal markets include manufacturers of cleaning and washing compounds (including detergents, shampoos, fabric softeners, toothpastes and household cleaners), paints, cosmetics, food, beverages, nutritional supplements, agricultural products and plastics.

Analyst Recommendations for Stepan (NYSE:SCL)

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