Graco Inc. (NYSE:GGG) was the recipient of a significant increase in short interest in the month of October. As of October 31st, there was short interest totalling 2,376,185 shares, an increase of 41.9% from the October 14th total of 1,674,387 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 401,034 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 5.9 days. Approximately 4.3% of the shares of the company are sold short.

A number of research firms have commented on GGG. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Graco from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, October 21st. Deutsche Bank AG began coverage on shares of Graco in a research report on Tuesday, September 6th. They set a “hold” rating and a $83.00 price objective for the company. Finally, William Blair cut shares of Graco from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and reduced their price objective for the stock from $89.00 to $78.00 in a research report on Thursday, July 21st. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, Graco currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $83.75.

In other Graco news, VP Karen Park Gallivan sold 10,000 shares of Graco stock in a transaction on Monday, November 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.00, for a total transaction of $800,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 19,868 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,589,440. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, VP Mark W. Sheahan sold 47,000 shares of Graco stock in a transaction on Thursday, November 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $79.13, for a total transaction of $3,719,110.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 66,223 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,240,225.99. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 5.60% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Geode Capital Management LLC raised its stake in Graco by 1.9% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 329,723 shares of the company’s stock worth $27,683,000 after buying an additional 6,252 shares during the last quarter. British Airways Pensions Investment Management Ltd raised its stake in shares of Graco by 99.8% in the second quarter. British Airways Pensions Investment Management Ltd now owns 183,670 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,566,000 after buying an additional 91,760 shares in the last quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA raised its stake in shares of Graco by 3,552.8% in the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 21,990 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,737,000 after buying an additional 21,388 shares in the last quarter. Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. raised its stake in shares of Graco by 16.7% in the second quarter. Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. now owns 15,537 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,227,000 after buying an additional 2,222 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Wesbanco Bank Inc. raised its stake in shares of Graco by 41.2% in the second quarter. Wesbanco Bank Inc. now owns 3,910 shares of the company’s stock valued at $309,000 after buying an additional 1,140 shares in the last quarter. 91.78% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Graco (NYSE:GGG) opened at 82.20 on Wednesday. Graco has a 1-year low of $63.05 and a 1-year high of $86.62. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $74.26 and a 200-day moving average price of $76.44. The firm has a market cap of $4.58 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.55 and a beta of 1.29.

Graco (NYSE:GGG) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 19th. The company reported $0.95 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.89 by $0.06. The business earned $327.20 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $331.66 million. Graco had a return on equity of 29.75% and a net margin of 15.20%. Graco’s quarterly revenue was up 2.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.86 EPS. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Graco will post $3.41 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, November 2nd. Investors of record on Monday, October 17th were given a $0.33 dividend. This represents a $1.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.61%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, October 13th. Graco’s payout ratio is currently 37.93%.

About Graco

Graco Inc (Graco) is a manufacturing company. The Company designs, manufactures and markets equipment to pump, meter, mix and dispense fluid and powder materials. The Company operates through three segments: Industrial, Process and Contractor. The Industrial segment markets equipment and pre-engineered packages for moving and applying paints, coatings, sealants, adhesives and other fluids.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:GGG

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