Brokerages forecast that Westlake Chemical Co. (NYSE:WLK) will report sales of $1.98 billion for the current quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Three analysts have made estimates for Westlake Chemical’s earnings, with the highest sales estimate coming in at $2.03 billion and the lowest estimate coming in at $1.90 billion. Westlake Chemical reported sales of $2.00 billion during the same quarter last year, which indicates a negative year-over-year growth rate of 1%. The company is expected to announce its next earnings results on Tuesday, February 18th.
On average, analysts expect that Westlake Chemical will report full year sales of $8.23 billion for the current fiscal year, with estimates ranging from $8.13 billion to $8.28 billion. For the next year, analysts expect that the business will post sales of $8.71 billion, with estimates ranging from $8.41 billion to $9.41 billion. Zacks’ sales calculations are an average based on a survey of sell-side analysts that that provide coverage for Westlake Chemical.
Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, November 5th. The specialty chemicals company reported $1.25 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.03 by $0.22. Westlake Chemical had a return on equity of 8.52% and a net margin of 5.74%. The company had revenue of $2.07 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.16 billion. During the same period last year, the business posted $2.35 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 8.4% compared to the same quarter last year.
A number of research analysts have recently weighed in on WLK shares. Nomura cut their price objective on Westlake Chemical from $53.00 to $51.00 and set a “reduce” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, September 18th. SunTrust Banks lowered Westlake Chemical from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $75.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Thursday, November 7th. ValuEngine lowered Westlake Chemical from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, November 19th. Barclays cut their price objective on Westlake Chemical from $71.00 to $65.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, October 3rd. Finally, Bank of America lowered Westlake Chemical from a “buy” rating to an “underperform” rating in a report on Friday, August 16th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. Westlake Chemical has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $71.99.
Shares of WLK stock opened at $68.54 on Wednesday. The stock’s 50-day simple moving average is $68.45 and its 200-day simple moving average is $64.85. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.59, a quick ratio of 2.08 and a current ratio of 2.81. The firm has a market capitalization of $8.80 billion, a PE ratio of 8.78, a P/E/G ratio of 2.76 and a beta of 1.70. Westlake Chemical has a fifty-two week low of $55.82 and a fifty-two week high of $81.04.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, December 10th. Investors of record on Tuesday, November 26th were issued a dividend of $0.2625 per share. This represents a $1.05 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.53%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, November 25th. Westlake Chemical’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 13.44%.
In related news, CAO George J. Mangieri sold 1,583 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, November 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $75.05, for a total transaction of $118,804.15. Following the sale, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 1,582 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $118,729.10. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 72.60% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Janus Henderson Group PLC grew its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 1,916.5% during the second quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 661,881 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $45,974,000 after acquiring an additional 629,057 shares during the period. Wedge Capital Management L L P NC grew its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 11.2% during the third quarter. Wedge Capital Management L L P NC now owns 116,897 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $7,659,000 after acquiring an additional 11,801 shares during the period. First Allied Advisory Services Inc. grew its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 2.0% during the second quarter. First Allied Advisory Services Inc. now owns 9,368 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $651,000 after acquiring an additional 185 shares during the period. California Public Employees Retirement System grew its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 0.3% during the third quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 101,433 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $6,646,000 after acquiring an additional 289 shares during the period. Finally, Pictet Asset Management Ltd. grew its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 295.3% during the second quarter. Pictet Asset Management Ltd. now owns 12,100 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $840,000 after acquiring an additional 9,039 shares during the period. 30.53% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
About Westlake Chemical
Westlake Chemical Corporation manufactures and markets basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers, and building products worldwide. It operates through two segments, Olefins and Vinyls. The Olefins segment offers polyethylene, styrene monomers, and various ethylene co-products, as well as sells propylene, crude butadiene, pyrolysis gasoline, and hydrogen products.
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