DnB Asset Management AS Invests $1.19 Million in Westlake Co. (NYSE:WLK)

DnB Asset Management AS bought a new position in Westlake Co. (NYSE:WLKGet Rating) in the 2nd quarter, Holdings Channel.com reports. The firm bought 12,143 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,190,000.

Several other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of WLK. Teachers Retirement System of The State of Kentucky purchased a new position in Westlake in the first quarter valued at about $6,980,000. Bank of America Corp DE boosted its holdings in Westlake by 24.5% in the first quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 441,333 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $54,460,000 after purchasing an additional 86,852 shares during the last quarter. Midwest Wealth Management Inc. purchased a new position in Westlake in the first quarter valued at about $373,000. Neuberger Berman Group LLC purchased a new position in Westlake in the first quarter valued at about $1,286,000. Finally, BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA boosted its holdings in Westlake by 10.2% in the first quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 104,702 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $12,920,000 after purchasing an additional 9,661 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 27.72% of the company’s stock.

Westlake Stock Performance

Shares of WLK stock opened at $86.56 on Thursday. Westlake Co. has a 12-month low of $83.31 and a 12-month high of $141.19. The firm has a market capitalization of $11.11 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 3.92, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.24 and a beta of 1.21. The business has a 50 day simple moving average of $97.47 and a 200 day simple moving average of $111.87. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.49, a current ratio of 2.39 and a quick ratio of 1.59.

Westlake Increases Dividend

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, September 6th. Investors of record on Monday, August 22nd were issued a $0.357 dividend. This represents a $1.43 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.65%. This is a positive change from Westlake’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.30. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, August 19th. Westlake’s dividend payout ratio is 6.47%.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

A number of brokerages recently commented on WLK. Wells Fargo & Company reduced their price target on Westlake from $162.00 to $150.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a report on Tuesday, June 21st. Morgan Stanley cut their price objective on Westlake from $120.00 to $115.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a research note on Monday, August 8th. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft cut their price objective on Westlake from $115.00 to $100.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday. UBS Group cut their price objective on Westlake from $117.00 to $92.00 and set a “sell” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, July 13th. Finally, Citigroup cut their price objective on Westlake from $114.00 to $106.00 in a research note on Monday, August 8th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company. According to MarketBeat.com, the company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $122.79.

Insider Buying and Selling

In related news, CAO Johnathan Stevan Zoeller sold 542 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $107.08, for a total value of $58,037.36. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 543 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $58,144.44. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Corporate insiders own 73.80% of the company’s stock.

About Westlake

(Get Rating)

Westlake Corporation manufactures and supplies petrochemicals, polymers, and building products worldwide. It operates through two segments, Performance and Essential Materials; and Housing and Infrastructure Products. The Performance and Essential Materials segment manufactures and markets polyethylene, styrene monomer, ethylene co-products, PVC, VCM, ethylene dichloride chlor-alkali, and chlorinated derivative products.

Further Reading

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Westlake (NYSE:WLK)

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