Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL reduced its position in Westlake Chemical Corporation (NYSE:WLK) by 10.5% during the second quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The firm owned 108,600 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock after selling 12,800 shares during the period. Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL owned about 0.08% of Westlake Chemical Corporation worth $7,190,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other hedge funds have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation by 8.4% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 4,201,948 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $277,538,000 after buying an additional 326,298 shares during the last quarter. FMR LLC raised its position in shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation by 7.5% in the first quarter. FMR LLC now owns 2,442,430 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $161,323,000 after buying an additional 171,342 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation by 14,246.4% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 1,699,615 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $112,260,000 after buying an additional 1,687,768 shares during the period. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC raised its position in shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation by 215.3% in the first quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 1,368,155 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $90,367,000 after buying an additional 934,281 shares during the period. Finally, Wellington Management Group LLP raised its position in shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation by 12.1% in the first quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 1,308,381 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $86,420,000 after buying an additional 141,114 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 30.14% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation (NYSE:WLK) opened at 73.27 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $9.46 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.94 and a beta of 1.67. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $70.20 and a 200 day moving average of $65.60. Westlake Chemical Corporation has a one year low of $48.13 and a one year high of $74.38.

Westlake Chemical Corporation (NYSE:WLK) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The specialty chemicals company reported $1.21 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.19 by $0.02. Westlake Chemical Corporation had a return on equity of 13.68% and a net margin of 6.57%. The firm had revenue of $1.98 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.85 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 82.2% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts anticipate that Westlake Chemical Corporation will post $4.67 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, September 18th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 1st will be given a dividend of $0.21 per share. This represents a $0.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.15%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 30th. This is a boost from Westlake Chemical Corporation’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.19. Westlake Chemical Corporation’s dividend payout ratio is currently 21.71%.

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WLK has been the topic of a number of research reports. Cowen and Company reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $70.00 target price on shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation in a research report on Friday, July 14th. J P Morgan Chase & Co boosted their target price on shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation from $70.00 to $72.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 31st. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. BidaskClub raised shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 13th. Finally, Bank of America Corporation reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and set a $68.00 target price on shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation in a research report on Monday, May 8th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, six have given a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the stock. Westlake Chemical Corporation presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $65.56.

In other news, VP Mark Steven Bender sold 13,794 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, August 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.22, for a total transaction of $968,614.68. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 44,449 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,121,208.78. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. 71.70% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

About Westlake Chemical Corporation

Westlake Chemical Corporation is a global manufacturer and marketer of basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers and building products. The Company’s products include a range of chemicals, which are fundamental to various consumer and industrial markets, including flexible and rigid packaging, automotive products, coatings, water treatment, refrigerants, residential and commercial construction, as well as other durable and non-durable goods.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Westlake Chemical Corporation (NYSE:WLK)

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