Neenah Paper Inc. (NYSE:NP) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Neenah is a leading global specialty materials company, focused on premium niche markets that include advanced filtration media, specialized substrates used for tapes, labels and other products, and premium printing and packaging papers. The company is headquartered in Alpharetta, Georgia and its products are sold in over 70 countries worldwide from manufacturing operations in the United States and Germany. “

Separately, DA Davidson reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $78.00 price objective on shares of Neenah Paper in a research note on Thursday, November 10th.

Shares of Neenah Paper (NYSE:NP) opened at 83.35 on Tuesday. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $79.64 and its 200 day moving average is $75.02. Neenah Paper has a 1-year low of $52.70 and a 1-year high of $83.70. The company has a market cap of $1.40 billion, a P/E ratio of 20.93 and a beta of 1.45.

Neenah Paper (NYSE:NP) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, November 8th. The company reported $0.99 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.99. Neenah Paper had a net margin of 7.12% and a return on equity of 22.20%. The company earned $232.90 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $243.15 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.89 EPS. Neenah Paper’s revenue was up .6% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts predict that Neenah Paper will post $4.31 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 2nd. Investors of record on Friday, November 11th will be paid a dividend of $0.33 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 8th. This represents a $1.32 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.58%. Neenah Paper’s dividend payout ratio is presently 33.42%.

In other news, Director William M. Cook purchased 500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 14th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $81.68 per share, with a total value of $40,840.00. Following the purchase, the director now directly owns 1,563 shares in the company, valued at approximately $127,665.84. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, VP Larry Newton Brownlee sold 368 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.56, for a total transaction of $29,646.08. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now directly owns 368 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $29,646.08. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 2.00% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Victory Capital Management Inc. boosted its position in Neenah Paper by 44,368.4% in the second quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 415,780 shares of the company’s stock worth $30,090,000 after buying an additional 414,845 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors raised its stake in Neenah Paper by 8.7% in the third quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 1,158,338 shares of the company’s stock worth $91,520,000 after buying an additional 92,893 shares during the period. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. raised its stake in Neenah Paper by 18.3% in the second quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 546,992 shares of the company’s stock worth $39,585,000 after buying an additional 84,442 shares during the period. Macquarie Group Ltd. raised its stake in Neenah Paper by 27.5% in the second quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 371,431 shares of the company’s stock worth $26,880,000 after buying an additional 80,214 shares during the period. Finally, Copeland Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in Neenah Paper during the second quarter worth about $5,253,000. 89.30% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Neenah Paper

Neenah Paper, Inc has two principal operations, technical products business, and fine paper and packaging business. The Company’s segments consist of Technical Products, Fine Paper and Packaging, and Other. The technical products business is an international producer of fiber-formed, coated and/or saturated specialized media, which includes filtration media (Filtration), tape and abrasives backings products (Backings), and durable label and specialty substrate products (Specialty).

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