Media stories about Stepan (NYSE:SCL) have been trending somewhat positive this week, Accern Sentiment reports. The research group identifies negative and positive news coverage by analyzing more than 20 million news and blog sources. Accern ranks coverage of publicly-traded companies on a scale of negative one to positive one, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. Stepan earned a coverage optimism score of 0.16 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned news articles about the basic materials company an impact score of 44.9338815153304 out of 100, meaning that recent news coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the company’s share price in the immediate future.

SCL has been the subject of a number of research reports. Zacks Investment Research raised Stepan from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Saturday, September 16th. TD Securities reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $33.00 price target on shares of Stepan in a research report on Sunday, September 24th. National Bank Financial upgraded Stepan from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and lifted their price objective for the company from $27.00 to $35.00 in a research note on Wednesday, October 11th. Finally, Scotiabank upgraded Stepan from an “underperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and set a $32.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, November 14th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating, three have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $35.60.

Stepan (SCL) opened at $79.31 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $1,796.18, a PE ratio of 20.55 and a beta of 1.30. Stepan has a 52 week low of $68.51 and a 52 week high of $92.97. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38, a quick ratio of 2.08 and a current ratio of 2.64.

Stepan (NYSE:SCL) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 25th. The basic materials company reported $0.92 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.09 by ($0.17). The company had revenue of $487.81 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $469.75 million. Stepan had a net margin of 4.81% and a return on equity of 13.98%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 9.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $1.06 EPS. equities research analysts expect that Stepan will post 4.3 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 15th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, November 30th were paid a dividend of $0.225 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, November 29th. This represents a $0.90 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.13%. This is a positive change from Stepan’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.21. Stepan’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 23.32%.

In other Stepan news, VP Frank Pacholec sold 832 shares of Stepan stock in a transaction dated Thursday, November 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $80.55, for a total transaction of $67,017.60. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 49,429 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,981,505.95. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, VP Arthur W. Mergner sold 1,000 shares of Stepan stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $81.16, for a total value of $81,160.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 2,960 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $240,233.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 2,650 shares of company stock valued at $215,793 in the last quarter. Company insiders own 13.10% of the company’s stock.

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Stepan Company Profile

Stepan Company produces specialty and intermediate chemicals, which are sold to other manufacturers and used in a range of end products. The Company operates through three segments: Surfactants, Polymers and Specialty Products. The Company’s principal markets include manufacturers of cleaning and washing compounds (including detergents, shampoos, fabric softeners, toothpastes and household cleaners), paints, cosmetics, food, beverages, nutritional supplements, agricultural products and plastics.

Insider Buying and Selling by Quarter for Stepan (NYSE:SCL)

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