PQ Group (NYSE:PQG) Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of PQ Group (NYSE:PQG) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Friday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “PQ Group Holdings Inc. is an integrated, provider of catalysts, specialty materials and chemicals and services. It operates primarily in North America, Europe, South America and Asia. The company serves refinery, emissions control and petrochemical industries. PQ Group Holdings Inc. is based in MALVERN, United States. “

Shares of PQG stock traded up $0.27 on Friday, reaching $15.90. 75,351 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 104,832. The company has a market capitalization of $2.16 billion, a PE ratio of 18.28, a PEG ratio of 1.19 and a beta of 0.68. PQ Group has a one year low of $13.28 and a one year high of $18.54. The company has a current ratio of 2.17, a quick ratio of 1.09 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.28. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $15.81.

PQ Group (NYSE:PQG) last released its earnings results on Thursday, May 9th. The company reported $0.13 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.12 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $359.20 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $367.89 million. PQ Group had a return on equity of 6.82% and a net margin of 3.83%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 1.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.16 earnings per share. As a group, analysts anticipate that PQ Group will post 0.82 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, insider Ray Kolberg sold 12,077 shares of PQ Group stock in a transaction on Wednesday, June 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $15.87, for a total transaction of $191,661.99. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Insiders own 2.60% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in PQG. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can acquired a new stake in shares of PQ Group during the fourth quarter worth $62,000. Legal & General Group Plc grew its stake in shares of PQ Group by 21.5% during the fourth quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 6,775 shares of the company’s stock worth $100,000 after purchasing an additional 1,201 shares during the period. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA grew its stake in shares of PQ Group by 262.4% during the first quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 8,465 shares of the company’s stock worth $128,000 after purchasing an additional 6,129 shares during the period. SG Americas Securities LLC acquired a new stake in shares of PQ Group during the first quarter worth $144,000. Finally, Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY grew its stake in shares of PQ Group by 294.6% during the fourth quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY now owns 10,670 shares of the company’s stock worth $158,000 after purchasing an additional 7,966 shares during the period. 68.85% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

PQ Group Company Profile

PQ Group Holdings Inc provides catalysts, specialty materials and chemicals, and services in the United States, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and internationally. The company operates in two segments, Environmental Catalysts and Services; and Performance Materials and Chemicals. It primarily offers refinery catalysts, emissions control catalysts, and catalyst recycling services for fuels and emission controls use; silica gels for edible oil and beer clarification; precipitated silicas and zeolites for the surface coating, dentifrice, and dishwasher and laundry detergent applications; reflective markings for roadways and airports; and hollow glass beads or microspheres for cement additive, metal finishing, and oil well cement uses.

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