Lincoln Electric (LECO) Downgraded to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Lincoln Electric (NASDAQ:LECO) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Lincoln Electric stands to gain from its improving end markets. Focus on commercializing innovative products, relatively stable pricing environment and cost-cutting initiatives will drive growth. It will also benefit from consistent investment in welding automation. Further, the acquisition of Air Liquide will enhance 2020 Vision and Strategy and enables Lincoln to build its global footprint. It will also be accretive to earnings. The company has a positive record of earnings surprises. The stock has outperformed the industry, over the past three months. Raw material inflation will impact margins in fourth-quarter 2017 as well as in 2018. A stronger U.S. dollar will continue to affect the company’s exports. “

Other research analysts have also issued research reports about the company. Barclays assumed coverage on Lincoln Electric in a report on Tuesday, December 12th. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $90.00 price target on the stock. B. Riley reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Lincoln Electric in a report on Wednesday, November 1st. FBR & Co reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $115.00 price target (up previously from $105.00) on shares of Lincoln Electric in a report on Friday, October 27th. BidaskClub upgraded Lincoln Electric from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, January 16th. Finally, UBS Group upgraded Lincoln Electric from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Thursday, January 4th. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. Lincoln Electric presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $103.38.

Shares of Lincoln Electric (LECO) traded down $0.19 during mid-day trading on Wednesday, reaching $90.46. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 164,423 shares, compared to its average volume of 424,220. The company has a quick ratio of 1.83, a current ratio of 2.55 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.75. The stock has a market cap of $5,950.23, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.84, a P/E/G ratio of 1.79 and a beta of 1.04. Lincoln Electric has a 12 month low of $81.39 and a 12 month high of $101.34.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Swiss National Bank increased its position in shares of Lincoln Electric by 2.2% during the 4th quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 101,000 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $9,250,000 after purchasing an additional 2,200 shares during the last quarter. Tradition Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Lincoln Electric during the 4th quarter worth about $232,000. Centiva Capital LP acquired a new stake in shares of Lincoln Electric during the 4th quarter worth about $305,000. Teacher Retirement System of Texas increased its position in shares of Lincoln Electric by 314.2% during the 4th quarter. Teacher Retirement System of Texas now owns 20,243 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $1,854,000 after purchasing an additional 15,356 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Albert D Mason Inc. increased its position in shares of Lincoln Electric by 51.9% during the 4th quarter. Albert D Mason Inc. now owns 8,835 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $809,000 after purchasing an additional 3,020 shares during the last quarter. 64.12% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Lincoln Electric Company Profile

Lincoln Electric Holdings, Inc is a manufacturer of welding, cutting and brazing products. The Company operates through three segments: Americas Welding, International Welding and The Harris Products Group. The Americas Welding segment includes welding operations in North and South America. The International Welding segment primarily includes welding operations in Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia.

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