Zacks: Brokerages Anticipate Ball Co. (BLL) Will Announce Quarterly Sales of $2.66 Billion

Wall Street brokerages expect Ball Co. (NYSE:BLL) to post sales of $2.66 billion for the current quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Five analysts have issued estimates for Ball’s earnings, with the highest sales estimate coming in at $2.69 billion and the lowest estimate coming in at $2.61 billion. Ball reported sales of $2.52 billion during the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year-over-year growth rate of 5.6%. The business is scheduled to issue its next quarterly earnings report before the market opens on Wednesday, February 7th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Ball will report full-year sales of $2.66 billion for the current year, with estimates ranging from $10.84 billion to $10.93 billion. For the next year, analysts anticipate that the firm will post sales of $11.23 billion per share, with estimates ranging from $11.04 billion to $11.40 billion. Zacks Investment Research’s sales averages are an average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that follow Ball.

Ball (NYSE:BLL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 2nd. The industrial products company reported $0.52 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.59 by ($0.07). Ball had a return on equity of 18.31% and a net margin of 2.13%. The firm had revenue of $2.91 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.91 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.48 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.7% on a year-over-year basis.

A number of analysts have recently weighed in on BLL shares. Citigroup raised Ball from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $45.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, January 17th. Zacks Investment Research raised Ball from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 3rd. TheStreet lowered Ball from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 14th. Vertical Research raised Ball from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $44.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Friday, December 15th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, KeyCorp lowered Ball from a “sector weight” rating to an “underweight” rating and cut their price objective for the stock from $40.81 to $36.00 in a research report on Friday, December 8th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $45.00.

Ball (BLL) traded down $0.47 during trading hours on Monday, reaching $38.25. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 310,340 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,173,623. The company has a quick ratio of 0.66, a current ratio of 1.04 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.95. Ball has a one year low of $35.65 and a one year high of $43.24. The firm has a market capitalization of $13,410.00, a PE ratio of 51.69, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.15 and a beta of 0.97.

In related news, Chairman John A. Hayes sold 5,695 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, November 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $41.29, for a total value of $235,146.55. Following the transaction, the chairman now owns 407,973 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $16,845,205.17. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, COO James N. Peterson sold 1,349 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, December 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.05, for a total value of $51,329.45. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 38,008 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,446,204.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 21,936 shares of company stock worth $873,238 in the last three months. 2.70% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC increased its holdings in Ball by 5,297.8% in the second quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 2,483 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $104,000 after buying an additional 2,437 shares during the last quarter. Benjamin F. Edwards & Company Inc. increased its holdings in Ball by 63.0% in the fourth quarter. Benjamin F. Edwards & Company Inc. now owns 3,881 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $147,000 after buying an additional 1,500 shares during the last quarter. Howe & Rusling Inc. purchased a new position in Ball in the third quarter valued at $182,000. Dai Ichi Life Insurance Company Ltd purchased a new position in Ball in the third quarter valued at $209,000. Finally, DF Dent & Co. Inc. purchased a new position in Ball in the third quarter valued at $224,000. 89.60% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Ball

Ball Corporation is a supplier of metal packaging to the beverage, food, personal care and household products industries. The Company’s packaging products are produced for a range of end uses and are manufactured in facilities around the world. Its segments include beverage packaging, North and Central America; beverage packaging, South America; beverage packaging, Europe; food and aerosol packaging; aerospace, and other.

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