StockNews.com Upgrades W.W. Grainger (NYSE:GWW) to Strong-Buy

W.W. Grainger (NYSE:GWWGet Rating) was upgraded by StockNews.com from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note issued on Wednesday.

Several other equities research analysts have also recently commented on the company. Morgan Stanley dropped their target price on W.W. Grainger from $474.00 to $449.00 and set an “underweight” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, May 31st. Atlantic Securities raised W.W. Grainger from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $580.00 price target on the stock in a report on Tuesday, March 15th. Stephens upped their price target on W.W. Grainger from $510.00 to $565.00 in a report on Monday, May 2nd. Finally, Wolfe Research raised W.W. Grainger from a “peer perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 6th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. According to MarketBeat.com, W.W. Grainger currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $514.44.

Shares of NYSE:GWW opened at $507.17 on Wednesday. W.W. Grainger has a 12 month low of $391.16 and a 12 month high of $529.91. The stock has a market cap of $25.92 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.61, a PEG ratio of 1.45 and a beta of 1.20. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $494.43 and its 200 day moving average price is $494.59. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.99, a current ratio of 2.55 and a quick ratio of 1.44.

W.W. Grainger (NYSE:GWWGet Rating) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, April 28th. The industrial products company reported $7.07 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $6.16 by $0.91. W.W. Grainger had a return on equity of 53.07% and a net margin of 8.58%. The firm had revenue of $3.65 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.51 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $4.48 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 18.3% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, sell-side analysts expect that W.W. Grainger will post 26.26 EPS for the current year.

In other W.W. Grainger news, VP John L. Howard sold 1,732 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, April 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $509.24, for a total transaction of $882,003.68. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 20,567 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $10,473,539.08. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CFO Deidra C. Merriwether sold 488 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, April 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $488.62, for a total transaction of $238,446.56. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 7,605 shares in the company, valued at $3,715,955.10. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 14,762 shares of company stock worth $7,252,245. Company insiders own 10.00% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Regentatlantic Capital LLC grew its holdings in shares of W.W. Grainger by 1.7% during the 1st quarter. Regentatlantic Capital LLC now owns 1,259 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $649,000 after acquiring an additional 21 shares in the last quarter. Nicolet Advisory Services LLC boosted its holdings in W.W. Grainger by 4.5% in the third quarter. Nicolet Advisory Services LLC now owns 515 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $203,000 after purchasing an additional 22 shares in the last quarter. Stratos Wealth Partners LTD. boosted its holdings in W.W. Grainger by 1.6% in the first quarter. Stratos Wealth Partners LTD. now owns 1,380 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $712,000 after purchasing an additional 22 shares in the last quarter. Private Advisor Group LLC boosted its holdings in W.W. Grainger by 2.2% in the first quarter. Private Advisor Group LLC now owns 1,067 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $550,000 after purchasing an additional 23 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Grandeur Peak Global Advisors LLC boosted its holdings in W.W. Grainger by 0.7% in the fourth quarter. Grandeur Peak Global Advisors LLC now owns 3,649 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $1,891,000 after purchasing an additional 24 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 79.47% of the company’s stock.

W.W. Grainger Company Profile (Get Rating)

W.W. Grainger, Inc distributes maintenance, repair, and operating (MRO) products and services in the United States, Japan, Canada, the United Kingdom, and internationally. The company operates through two segments, High-Touch Solutions N.A. and Endless Assortment. It offers safety and security supplies, material handling and storage equipment, pumps and plumbing equipment, cleaning and maintenance supplies, and metalworking and hand tools.

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