Fastenal Co. (NASDAQ:FAST) shares were down 4.8% on Tuesday after the company announced weaker than expected quarterly earnings. The company traded as low as $40.03 and last traded at $40.10, with a volume of 4,102,775 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $42.12.

The company reported $0.44 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.45 by $0.01. Fastenal had a return on equity of 27.83% and a net margin of 12.91%. The firm earned $1.01 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.01 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.47 earnings per share. Fastenal’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.8% compared to the same quarter last year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 22nd. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, October 25th will be issued a dividend of $0.30 per share. This represents a $1.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.00%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, October 21st. Fastenal’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 68.57%.

A number of equities research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Fastenal from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, September 13th. Morgan Stanley assumed coverage on shares of Fastenal in a report on Thursday, July 7th. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $46.00 price objective on the stock. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “market perform” rating and issued a $47.00 price target on shares of Fastenal in a report on Wednesday, July 13th. Macquarie assumed coverage on shares of Fastenal in a report on Thursday, August 25th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $50.00 price target on the stock. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co. reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Fastenal in a report on Sunday, September 4th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have issued a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. Fastenal currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $47.44.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in FAST. Cantab Capital Partners LLP bought a new position in Fastenal during the second quarter valued at $119,000. American Research & Management Co. increased its position in Fastenal by 191.5% in the second quarter. American Research & Management Co. now owns 2,740 shares of the company’s stock valued at $122,000 after buying an additional 1,800 shares during the period. Washington Trust Bank increased its position in Fastenal by 2.3% in the second quarter. Washington Trust Bank now owns 2,762 shares of the company’s stock valued at $123,000 after buying an additional 62 shares during the period. Van ECK Associates Corp increased its position in Fastenal by 32.0% in the second quarter. Van ECK Associates Corp now owns 3,131 shares of the company’s stock valued at $139,000 after buying an additional 759 shares during the period. Finally, FineMark National Bank & Trust increased its position in Fastenal by 0.6% in the second quarter. FineMark National Bank & Trust now owns 3,420 shares of the company’s stock valued at $152,000 after buying an additional 20 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 82.12% of the company’s stock.

The firm has a 50-day moving average of $41.74 and a 200-day moving average of $44.14. The company has a market capitalization of $11.55 billion, a PE ratio of 22.83 and a beta of 0.99.

About Fastenal

Fastenal Company is engaged in wholesale distribution of industrial and construction supplies. The Company distributes these supplies through a network of approximately 2,600 Company-owned stores. The Company sells industrial and construction supplies to end users (business-to-business), and also has a walk-in retail business.

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