Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Standard Motor Products, Inc. (NYSE:SMP) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note published on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Standard Motor is set to benefit from its solid brand recognition and regular capital deployment, which will enhance shareholder value. The company has been focused on reducing cost of production, which is expected to benefit its results. Standard Motor is not significantly exposed to the cyclical nature of the automotive industry since it is focused on the aftermarket, where it is a leading player. Moreover, Standard Motor’s shares have also underperformed the industry it belongs to, in the last six months.”

A number of other research firms also recently commented on SMP. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a buy rating and issued a $60.00 target price on shares of Standard Motor Products in a report on Wednesday, August 9th. BidaskClub raised Standard Motor Products from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, August 1st. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded Standard Motor Products from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Thursday, August 31st. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Standard Motor Products currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $54.00.

Standard Motor Products (SMP) opened at 48.92 on Tuesday. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.11 billion, a PE ratio of 18.23 and a beta of 1.80. Standard Motor Products has a 52-week low of $43.29 and a 52-week high of $55.37. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $46.04 and its 200-day moving average is $48.75.

Standard Motor Products (NYSE:SMP) last released its earnings results on Monday, July 31st. The auto parts company reported $0.81 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.99 by ($0.18). Standard Motor Products had a net margin of 5.55% and a return on equity of 14.83%. The business had revenue of $312.73 million during the quarter. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.88 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.2% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts anticipate that Standard Motor Products will post $2.87 earnings per share for the current year.

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In other news, VP Thomas Tesoro sold 3,950 shares of Standard Motor Products stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.91, for a total transaction of $189,244.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 29,026 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,390,635.66. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider Peter J. Sills sold 2,428 shares of Standard Motor Products stock in a transaction on Monday, October 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.43, for a total value of $117,588.04. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 94,145 shares of company stock valued at $4,205,024. 6.60% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Curbstone Financial Management Corp raised its stake in shares of Standard Motor Products by 95.0% during the 3rd quarter. Curbstone Financial Management Corp now owns 15,552 shares of the auto parts company’s stock worth $750,000 after buying an additional 7,576 shares during the last quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new position in shares of Standard Motor Products during the 2nd quarter worth $227,000. Coldstream Capital Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Standard Motor Products by 7.7% during the 2nd quarter. Coldstream Capital Management Inc. now owns 12,833 shares of the auto parts company’s stock worth $670,000 after buying an additional 915 shares during the last quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company raised its stake in shares of Standard Motor Products by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 16,970 shares of the auto parts company’s stock worth $886,000 after buying an additional 80 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State Street Corp raised its stake in shares of Standard Motor Products by 2.7% during the 2nd quarter. State Street Corp now owns 497,020 shares of the auto parts company’s stock worth $25,954,000 after buying an additional 13,034 shares during the last quarter. 78.40% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Standard Motor Products Company Profile

Standard Motor Products, Inc is an independent manufacturer and distributor of replacement parts for motor vehicles in the automotive aftermarket industry with a complementary focus on heavy duty, industrial equipment and the original equipment service market. The Company’s segments include Engine Management Segment and Temperature Control Segment.

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