3M (NYSE:MMM) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “3M's global footprint, diversified product portfolio and the ability to penetrate in different markets have been its forte. At the same time, the company is continuing with its portfolio restructuring efforts by divesting assets that no longer fit in its strategy and continues to make investments in other lucrative markets. Portfolio management, investment in innovation and business transformation are the three key levers on which 3M intends to focus. 3M has outperformed the industry in the past three months. However, given its international presence, adverse foreign currency translations are likely to affect 3M’s ability to realize projected growth rates in sales and earnings. 3M is also facing increased pension expenses as its workforce begins to retire. The related extra costs are a drag on the bottom line. Sustained dollar strength remains another headwind as exports consume a significant part of the company’s operations.”

MMM has been the topic of several other research reports. Bank of America reissued a “buy” rating and set a $227.00 price target on shares of 3M in a research note on Thursday, September 14th. Argus reissued a “buy” rating on shares of 3M in a research note on Friday, December 22nd. Credit Suisse Group reissued an “outperform” rating and set a $237.00 price target (up previously from $229.00) on shares of 3M in a research note on Wednesday, October 11th. Citigroup boosted their price target on 3M from $250.00 to $262.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 25th. Finally, ValuEngine lowered 3M from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, December 1st. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $231.16.

Shares of 3M (NYSE:MMM) traded down $1.58 during trading hours on Wednesday, hitting $234.06. The stock had a trading volume of 527,075 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,960,000. The stock has a market cap of $139,410.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 26.12, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.34 and a beta of 1.10. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89, a current ratio of 2.07 and a quick ratio of 1.47. 3M has a fifty-two week low of $173.55 and a fifty-two week high of $244.23.

3M (NYSE:MMM) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 24th. The conglomerate reported $2.33 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.21 by $0.12. The business had revenue of $8.17 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $7.93 billion. 3M had a return on equity of 48.55% and a net margin of 17.71%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 6.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $2.15 EPS. sell-side analysts expect that 3M will post 9.08 EPS for the current year.

In other 3M news, VP Khandpur K. Ashish sold 4,004 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $231.39, for a total value of $926,485.56. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 5,236 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,211,558.04. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, insider Jon T. Lindekugel sold 400 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, October 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $230.06, for a total value of $92,024.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 22,804 shares of company stock worth $5,303,706. 0.58% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of MMM. Palo Capital increased its holdings in shares of 3M by 7.0% during the 3rd quarter. Palo Capital now owns 6,090 shares of the conglomerate’s stock worth $863,000 after buying an additional 400 shares during the last quarter. Eagle Asset Management boosted its position in 3M by 243.7% during the 3rd quarter. Eagle Asset Management now owns 1,011,324 shares of the conglomerate’s stock worth $143,374,000 after purchasing an additional 717,118 shares during the period. Chelsea Counsel Company boosted its position in 3M by 5.9% during the 3rd quarter. Chelsea Counsel Company now owns 118,728 shares of the conglomerate’s stock worth $16,832,000 after purchasing an additional 6,568 shares during the period. Park National boosted its position in 3M by 0.7% during the 4th quarter. Park National now owns 185,158 shares of the conglomerate’s stock worth $27,892,000 after purchasing an additional 1,222 shares during the period. Finally, Renaissance Investment Group boosted its position in 3M by 51.4% during the 4th quarter. Renaissance Investment Group now owns 2,401 shares of the conglomerate’s stock worth $362,000 after purchasing an additional 815 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 66.20% of the company’s stock.

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3M Company Profile

3M Company is a technology company. It operates through five segments. The Industrial segment serves a range of markets, such as automotive original equipment manufacturer and automotive aftermarket, , appliance, paper and printing, packaging, food and beverage, and construction. The Safety and Graphics segment serves a range of markets for the safety, security and productivity of people, facilities and systems.

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