Clorox (CLX) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research to “Hold”

Clorox (NYSE:CLX) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Monday.

According to Zacks, “Clorox has outperformed the industry in the last three months. The company is gaining from the 2020 Strategy, which is aimed at bolstering growth for the improvement of categories and overall market share. The company delivered a solid start to fiscal 2018 as both first-quarter fiscal 2018 earnings and sales topped estimates and improved year over year. Earnings marked the fourth straight quarterly beat, while sales surpassed estimates for the second consecutive quarter. Earnings primarily gained from solid sales and gross margin expansion, while sales was driven by growth across the United Sates and International businesses, alongside rise in volumes. Despite a strong start to fiscal 2018, the company cut its view for the fiscal due to hurricane-related impacts and the divestiture of Aplicare business. Further, inflation and high commodity and logistics costs may dent gross margin.”

Several other research analysts also recently weighed in on the company. Jefferies Group reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $148.00 price target on shares of Clorox in a research note on Thursday, January 4th. Wells Fargo & Co increased their price target on Clorox from $130.00 to $146.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 4th. Bank of America upgraded Clorox from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $155.00 price target for the company in a research note on Thursday, January 4th. Deutsche Bank assumed coverage on Clorox in a research note on Wednesday, December 13th. They set a “hold” rating and a $142.00 price target for the company. Finally, Consumer Edge upgraded Clorox from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, November 10th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $134.33.

Shares of Clorox (NYSE:CLX) traded up $0.62 during trading on Monday, hitting $144.48. The stock had a trading volume of 734,055 shares, compared to its average volume of 737,133. Clorox has a 1 year low of $118.87 and a 1 year high of $150.40. The stock has a market cap of $18,630.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 26.51, a PEG ratio of 3.76 and a beta of 0.42. The company has a current ratio of 1.10, a quick ratio of 0.77 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 3.02.

Clorox (NYSE:CLX) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, November 1st. The company reported $1.46 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.41 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $1.50 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.48 billion. Clorox had a return on equity of 161.59% and a net margin of 11.84%. The business’s revenue was up 4.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm posted $1.36 EPS. equities analysts forecast that Clorox will post 5.7 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Clorox news, SVP Matthew T. Laszlo sold 20,051 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $130.46, for a total value of $2,615,853.46. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 10,896 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,421,492.16. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, SVP Michael R. Costello sold 10,574 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $136.01, for a total value of $1,438,169.74. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 34,867 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,742,260.67. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.00% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. Sun Life Financial INC boosted its stake in Clorox by 10,344.4% in the 2nd quarter. Sun Life Financial INC now owns 940 shares of the company’s stock worth $125,000 after purchasing an additional 931 shares during the period. Salem Investment Counselors Inc. boosted its stake in Clorox by 2.5% in the 2nd quarter. Salem Investment Counselors Inc. now owns 1,256 shares of the company’s stock worth $167,000 after purchasing an additional 31 shares during the period. Phocas Financial Corp. bought a new position in Clorox in the 2nd quarter worth about $167,000. Dupont Capital Management Corp bought a new position in Clorox in the 3rd quarter worth about $199,000. Finally, Smith Moore & CO. bought a new position in Clorox in the 3rd quarter worth about $204,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.76% of the company’s stock.

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About Clorox

The Clorox Company is a manufacturer and marketer of consumer and professional products. The Company sells its products primarily through mass retail outlets, e-commerce channels, wholesale distributors and medical supply distributors. The Company operates through four segments: Cleaning, Household, Lifestyle and International.

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