Ashland Inc. (NYSE:ash) declared a quarterly dividend on Thursday, November 17th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, December 1st will be paid a dividend of 0.39 per share on Thursday, December 15th. This represents a $1.56 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.43%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, November 29th.

Ashland (NYSE:ASH) opened at 109.32 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $6.79 billion, a PE ratio of 36.48 and a beta of 0.98. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $112.68 and a 200 day moving average price of $114.99. Ashland has a one year low of $88.30 and a one year high of $125.00.

Ashland (NYSE:ASH) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, November 8th. The company reported $1.52 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.61 by $0.09. The company earned $1.20 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.25 billion. Ashland had a positive return on equity of 15.23% and a negative net margin of 0.59%. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.62 earnings per share. Analysts anticipate that Ashland will post $6.54 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Dividend History for Ashland (NYSE:ash)

A number of analysts recently commented on ASH shares. Credit Suisse Group AG set a $119.00 price target on Ashland and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, November 8th. TheStreet downgraded Ashland from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, November 8th. Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Ashland in a research report on Thursday, August 4th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research downgraded Ashland from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Friday, October 7th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Ashland presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $123.33.

In other news, CFO J Kevin Willis sold 1,555 shares of Ashland stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $106.84, for a total value of $166,136.20. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. 1.27% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in ASH. Keeley Asset Management Corp increased its position in Ashland by 0.3% in the second quarter. Keeley Asset Management Corp now owns 105,829 shares of the company’s stock valued at $12,146,000 after buying an additional 266 shares in the last quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC increased its position in Ashland by 1.0% in the second quarter. Atlantic Trust Group LLC now owns 61,042 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,006,000 after buying an additional 597 shares in the last quarter. Johnson Investment Counsel Inc. increased its position in Ashland by 31.6% in the second quarter. Johnson Investment Counsel Inc. now owns 2,512 shares of the company’s stock valued at $288,000 after buying an additional 603 shares in the last quarter. Panagora Asset Management Inc. increased its position in Ashland by 10.9% in the third quarter. Panagora Asset Management Inc. now owns 6,806 shares of the company’s stock valued at $789,000 after buying an additional 669 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans increased its position in Ashland by 3.8% in the second quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans now owns 18,640 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,139,000 after buying an additional 680 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 86.71% of the company’s stock.

Ashland Company Profile

Ashland Inc is engaged in specialty chemicals, and through Valvoline, is a consumer-branded lubricant supplier. The Company operates in three segments: Ashland Specialty Ingredients (Specialty Ingredients), Ashland Performance Materials (Performance Materials) and Valvoline. Its Specialty Ingredients segment is engaged in providing cellulose ethers, vinyl pyrrolidones and biofunctionals, and consists of two divisions: Consumer Specialties and Industrial Specialties.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:ASH

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