Dean Investment Associates LLC Takes $6.23 Million Position in Stepan (SCL)

Dean Investment Associates LLC bought a new position in Stepan (NYSE:SCL) in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm bought 74,915 shares of the basic materials company’s stock, valued at approximately $6,231,000. Stepan accounts for 0.9% of Dean Investment Associates LLC’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 27th biggest holding. Dean Investment Associates LLC owned approximately 0.33% of Stepan at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other hedge funds have also recently modified their holdings of the stock. Rhumbline Advisers lifted its position in Stepan by 1.7% in the first quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 52,559 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $4,372,000 after purchasing an additional 878 shares during the period. Strs Ohio lifted its holdings in shares of Stepan by 7.3% during the fourth quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 13,200 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,042,000 after acquiring an additional 900 shares during the period. First Trust Advisors LP lifted its holdings in shares of Stepan by 6.1% during the fourth quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 16,367 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,293,000 after acquiring an additional 935 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Stepan by 49.7% during the first quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 3,870 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $322,000 after acquiring an additional 1,284 shares during the period. Finally, Swiss National Bank lifted its holdings in shares of Stepan by 3.8% during the first quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 35,400 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,945,000 after acquiring an additional 1,300 shares during the period. 65.06% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Stepan stock opened at $71.16 on Monday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.35, a current ratio of 2.61 and a quick ratio of 1.98. Stepan has a 12-month low of $68.09 and a 12-month high of $92.97. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.61 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.30 and a beta of 1.14.

Stepan (NYSE:SCL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, April 24th. The basic materials company reported $1.37 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.46 by ($0.09). Stepan had a net margin of 4.62% and a return on equity of 14.73%. The business had revenue of $499.34 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $506.00 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.36 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 6.6% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts predict that Stepan will post 4.89 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 15th. Investors of record on Thursday, May 31st will be issued a $0.225 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, May 30th. This represents a $0.90 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.26%. Stepan’s dividend payout ratio is 19.35%.

In related news, VP Jennifer Ansbro Hale sold 2,044 shares of Stepan stock in a transaction dated Monday, February 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $77.25, for a total value of $157,899.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 6,131 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $473,619.75. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, VP Frank Pacholec sold 6,000 shares of Stepan stock in a transaction dated Monday, March 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $86.52, for a total value of $519,120.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 40,120 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,471,182.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 48,023 shares of company stock valued at $3,958,109 over the last ninety days. 12.60% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

A number of research analysts have issued reports on the company. ValuEngine cut Stepan from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 2nd. Zacks Investment Research cut Stepan from a “buy” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 2nd. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating, two have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $35.60.

Stepan Company Profile

Stepan Company, together with its subsidiaries, produces and sells specialty and intermediate chemicals to other manufacturers for use in various end products worldwide. The company operates through three segments: Surfactants, Polymers, and Specialty Products. The Surfactants segment offers surfactants that are used as principal ingredients in consumer and industrial cleaning products, including detergents for washing clothes, dishes, carpets, and floors and walls, as well as shampoos and body washes; and other applications, such as fabric softeners, germicidal quaternary compounds, and lubricating ingredients.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Stepan (NYSE:SCL)

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