Snap-On Inc. (NYSE:SNA) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday. The firm presently has a $191.00 price target on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price objective indicates a potential upside of 12.90% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Snap-On has registered an excellent earnings surprise history over the trailing four quarters, beating estimates all through. Snap-On is committed to its rapid continuous improvement (RCI) program, designed to enhance organizational effectiveness and minimize costs. This program has been instrumental in fuelling sales, margins and savings in the recent quarters. Also, the company has devised a comprehensive blueprint to drive long-run growth, which focuses on three critical areas, namely enhancing franchise network, expanding footprint in vehicle repair garage & vital industries, and penetrating emerging markets. Solid prospects across business segments, diversified portfolio and impressive traction of the newly launched products, continue to add to its strength. Also, the company’s recent strategic acquisitions are expected to stoke growth. However, sluggish oil market activities and high currency fluctuations risks raise concerns.”

Snap-On (NYSE:SNA) opened at 169.18 on Wednesday. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $157.28 and its 200-day moving average is $156.23. Snap-On has a 52-week low of $133.09 and a 52-week high of $174.52. The firm has a market capitalization of $9.82 billion, a PE ratio of 18.88 and a beta of 1.08.

Snap-On (NYSE:SNA) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, October 20th. The company reported $2.22 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.15 by $0.07. The business had revenue of $834.10 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $709.70 million. Snap-On had a net margin of 15.67% and a return on equity of 20.73%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm posted $1.98 earnings per share. On average, analysts anticipate that Snap-On will post $9.15 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 9th. Stockholders of record on Friday, November 18th will be given a dividend of $0.71 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 16th. This is a positive change from Snap-On’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.61. This represents a $2.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.68%. Snap-On’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 31.70%.

In related news, SVP Thomas J. Ward sold 42,000 shares of Snap-On stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $151.60, for a total value of $6,367,200.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, SVP Thomas L. Kassouf sold 20,000 shares of Snap-On stock in a transaction on Monday, November 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $168.09, for a total transaction of $3,361,800.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 45,542 shares in the company, valued at $7,655,154.78. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 3.40% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised its position in Snap-On by 39.1% in the third quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 4,149,833 shares of the company’s stock worth $630,609,000 after buying an additional 1,166,037 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can purchased a new position in Snap-On during the second quarter worth $86,320,000. Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its position in Snap-On by 51.7% in the second quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,100,392 shares of the company’s stock worth $173,664,000 after buying an additional 375,027 shares during the period. Nordea Investment Management AB raised its position in Snap-On by 4,219.1% in the second quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 370,363 shares of the company’s stock worth $58,451,000 after buying an additional 361,788 shares during the period. Finally, Adage Capital Partners GP L.L.C. raised its position in Snap-On by 66.7% in the third quarter. Adage Capital Partners GP L.L.C. now owns 795,662 shares of the company’s stock worth $120,909,000 after buying an additional 318,427 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 87.42% of the company’s stock.

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About Snap-On

Snap-On Incorporated is a manufacturer and marketer of tools, equipment, diagnostics, repair information and systems solutions for professional users. The Company’s segments include Commercial & Industrial Group, the Snap-on Tools Group, the Repair Systems & Information Group and Financial Services. Its Commercial & Industrial Group segment consists of business operations serving a range of industrial and commercial customers across the world.

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