On May 26, 2023, PNC Financial Services Group Inc. announced a 5.0% decrease in its holdings in Leggett & Platt, Incorporated (NYSE:LEG) during the fourth quarter. The company sold 8,688 shares of LEG’s stock, leaving it with a total of 165,645 shares worth $5,339,000 at the end of the reporting period. This news comes as investors look to navigate an often-turbulent market and seek out profitable opportunities.
Despite this decrease in PNC’s investment in LEG, there is some positive news for shareholders. The company recently disclosed that it will pay out a quarterly dividend on Friday, July 14th – an event sure to be welcomed by most investors. Shareholders of record on Thursday, June 15th will receive a dividend of $0.46 per share. This represents a $1.84 annualized payout and a yield of 5.82%. Interestingly, this amount marks an increase from LEG’s previous quarterly dividend payout of $0.44.
It should come as no surprise that Leggett & Platt continues to generate buzz within the investor community; after all, it boasts strong fundamentals and solid potential for long-term growth. As one of the world’s leading diversified manufacturers serving several industries – including furniture makers and consumer retail giants – LEG has built up an expansive distribution network and enjoys strong brand recognition among consumers.
However, it’s worth noting that even established players like Leggett & Platt are not immune to insider trading scandals – as was evident in recent news concerning Director Phoebe A. Wood selling off six thousand shares of LEG stock at an average price of $32.61 on Tuesday May 23rd- totalling to $195660.. Following this sale transaction, Ms Wood now holds only slightly over fifty three thousand shares worth approximately $1,731884 when factoring her ownership stake.
At present, Leggett & Platt has a payout ratio of 88.00%, indicating that the company is paying out the majority of its earnings as dividends. While analysts may debate on whether this dividend policy represents a prudent use of cash reserves by LEG management, one thing remains clear – Leggett & Platt remains an attractive inveestment vehicle for many despite being influenced by insider trading activity in some circles. Ultimately, companies must balance the obligation to reward shareholders against the need to reinvest capital into future growth initiatives if they want to continue remaining relevant.
Institutional Investors Increasing Stakes in Leggett & Platt, Mixed Analyst Reviews and Strong Financial Performance
Leggett & Platt, Incorporated (NYSE:LEG) has been making headlines recently due to the changes in positions by several institutional investors and hedge funds. Lumature Wealth Partners LLC, Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund, State of Michigan Retirement System, Geneos Wealth Management Inc., and Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD have all raised their stakes by acquiring additional shares of the company’s stock.
According to recent analyst reports, Leggett & Platt has received mixed reviews. Piper Sandler rated the company as “underweight” with a reduced target price of $21.00 per share from $24.00 per share. The Goldman Sachs Group rated the company as “neutral” and also reduced its price objective for the company from $39.00 to $34.00 per share. StockNews.com rated it as a “hold.”
The company recently declared payment of a quarterly dividend on July 14th, payable to shareholders in record as of June 15th at a rate of $0.46 per share, representing an annualized dividend payout ratio currently set at 88%. This represents an increase from Leggett & Platt’s previous quarterly dividend payout of $0.44 per share.
Shares of LEG opened at $31.63 on May 26th and have shown a fifty-day moving average figure of $31.66 and a two-hundred-day moving average figure of $33.32 with a market capitalization of around $4.21 billion and a low-high range of $30.05-$41.94 over the past year.
As regards its financials performance this fiscal year, Leggett & Platt recently reported earnings data revealing EPS for Q1’23 at $0.39 per share compared to consensus estimates that predicted only half that amount ($0.26), boasting an exciting 48% earnings surprise for investors! On their revenue front line, the firm generated more than expected ($1.21 billion) compared to analyst projections ($1.19 billion). Although the most recent quarter’s revenue was down 8.2%, Leggett & Platt’s net margin retained a solid reading of 5.42% and return on equity boasted an impressive 16.83%. There remains a positive outlook from sell-side analysts with an estimated projection to post 1.61 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Overall, Leggett & Platt is showing sound financial performance and benefiting from smart stake increases by institutional investors and hedge funds, pointing towards potentially gains in future investing strategies in this space.
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