Air Products and Chemicals Inc. (NYSE:APD) was the recipient of a large growth in short interest in September. As of September 30th, there was short interest totalling 3,357,023 shares, a growth of 42.0% from the September 15th total of 2,363,430 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 1,719,808 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 2.0 days. Approximately 1.6% of the company’s stock are short sold.

A number of analysts have commented on APD shares. Zacks Investment Research cut Air Products and Chemicals from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 4th. Seaport Global Securities raised Air Products and Chemicals from an “accumulate” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $165.00 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, July 11th. Atlantic Securities raised Air Products and Chemicals from an “underweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $125.00 to $135.00 in a research report on Friday, September 30th. Citigroup Inc. lifted their price target on Air Products and Chemicals from $155.00 to $157.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, July 15th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised Air Products and Chemicals from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $140.00 to $160.00 in a research report on Friday, August 12th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Air Products and Chemicals has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $151.43.

In other Air Products and Chemicals news, SVP John D. Stanley sold 17,247 shares of Air Products and Chemicals stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $155.39, for a total transaction of $2,680,011.33. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 36,129 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,614,085.31. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, SVP John D. Stanley sold 9,597 shares of Air Products and Chemicals stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $150.00, for a total value of $1,439,550.00. Following the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 28,479 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,271,850. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.33% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in APD. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group increased its position in Air Products and Chemicals by 0.3% in the second quarter. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group now owns 2,757 shares of the company’s stock valued at $392,000 after buying an additional 9 shares in the last quarter. Hudock Capital Group LLC increased its stake in shares of Air Products and Chemicals by 0.4% in the second quarter. Hudock Capital Group LLC now owns 2,010 shares of the company’s stock valued at $285,000 after buying an additional 9 shares during the period. Davis Selected Advisers increased its stake in shares of Air Products and Chemicals by 0.6% in the second quarter. Davis Selected Advisers now owns 1,815 shares of the company’s stock valued at $258,000 after buying an additional 11 shares during the period. Bollard Group LLC increased its stake in shares of Air Products and Chemicals by 0.6% in the second quarter. Bollard Group LLC now owns 2,067 shares of the company’s stock valued at $294,000 after buying an additional 12 shares during the period. Finally, Wetherby Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Air Products and Chemicals by 0.4% in the second quarter. Wetherby Asset Management Inc. now owns 3,613 shares of the company’s stock valued at $513,000 after buying an additional 16 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 88.46% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Air Products and Chemicals (NYSE:APD) opened at 132.28 on Tuesday. Air Products and Chemicals has a 1-year low of $106.05 and a 1-year high of $146.01. The stock has a market capitalization of $28.65 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 49.49 and a beta of 1.23. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $138.30 and its 200 day moving average price is $135.85.

Air Products and Chemicals (NYSE:APD) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $1.92 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.90 by $0.02. Air Products and Chemicals had a net margin of 6.12% and a return on equity of 22.00%. The company earned $2.43 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.41 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $1.65 earnings per share. Air Products and Chemicals’s revenue for the quarter was down 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Air Products and Chemicals will post $7.51 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, November 14th. Shareholders of record on Monday, October 3rd will be paid a $0.86 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, October 6th. This represents a $3.44 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.60%. Air Products and Chemicals’s dividend payout ratio is presently 128.84%.

About Air Products and Chemicals

Air Products and Chemicals, Inc is an industrial gases company. The Company’s Industrial Gases business provides atmospheric and process gases and related equipment to manufacturing markets, including refining and petrochemical, metals, electronics, and food and beverage. The Company operates through seven segments: Industrial Gases-Americas, Industrial Gases-Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA), Industrial Gases-Asia, Industrial Gases-Global, Materials Technologies, Energy-from-Waste, and Corporate and other.

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