Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Thursday, January 4th.

According to Zacks, “P&G is known for its strong brand recognition, diversified portfolio, impressive product development capabilities and marketing prowess as well as strong cash flow productivity. The company is investing in its brands and products as well as redesigning the supply chain to improve productivity and organic growth. However, slowing market growth, weak volumes and organic sales have been hurting sales. P&G shares have also underperformed its industry in the last one year. Soft consumer-spending environment in developed markets and uncertainties in emerging countries also add to the worries. That said, P&G is speeding up innovations and investments to counter the softening industry growth. Its productivity improvements and cost-saving efforts are also consistently helping to boost profit level.”

Several other equities research analysts also recently issued reports on PG. Morgan Stanley reduced their price objective on Procter & Gamble from $91.00 to $90.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday, October 24th. Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $104.00 target price (up from $103.00) on shares of Procter & Gamble in a research report on Wednesday, September 20th. Vetr raised Procter & Gamble from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $93.02 price objective on the stock in a report on Friday, September 15th. Royal Bank of Canada restated an “outperform” rating and set a $80.00 target price on shares of Procter & Gamble in a research note on Wednesday, September 6th. Finally, Macquarie began coverage on Procter & Gamble in a research note on Thursday, September 14th. They set an “outperform” rating and a $102.00 target price for the company. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $88.01.

Procter & Gamble (NYSE PG) opened at $86.86 on Thursday. Procter & Gamble has a 52-week low of $85.42 and a 52-week high of $94.67. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.41, a current ratio of 0.94 and a quick ratio of 0.79. The stock has a market capitalization of $222,567.33, a P/E ratio of 23.22, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.74 and a beta of 0.67.

Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, January 23rd. The company reported $1.19 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.14 by $0.05. Procter & Gamble had a return on equity of 20.66% and a net margin of 15.34%. The firm had revenue of $17.40 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $17.39 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $1.08 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 3.2% on a year-over-year basis. equities research analysts anticipate that Procter & Gamble will post 4.2 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, insider Deborah P. Majoras sold 4,591 shares of Procter & Gamble stock in a transaction dated Friday, January 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $87.48, for a total value of $401,620.68. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, insider Carolyn M. Tastad sold 5,300 shares of Procter & Gamble stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $89.18, for a total value of $472,654.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 57,191 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,100,293.38. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 70,152 shares of company stock worth $6,232,571. Corporate insiders own 0.35% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in PG. Trillium Asset Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of Procter & Gamble by 2.0% in the second quarter. Trillium Asset Management LLC now owns 170,302 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,842,000 after buying an additional 3,387 shares during the period. Barrett Asset Management LLC lifted its stake in shares of Procter & Gamble by 3.3% in the 2nd quarter. Barrett Asset Management LLC now owns 137,397 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,974,000 after acquiring an additional 4,325 shares during the last quarter. Aviva PLC lifted its stake in shares of Procter & Gamble by 1.7% in the 2nd quarter. Aviva PLC now owns 1,814,623 shares of the company’s stock valued at $158,162,000 after acquiring an additional 30,897 shares during the last quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. lifted its stake in shares of Procter & Gamble by 1,094.3% in the 3rd quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. now owns 736,699 shares of the company’s stock valued at $67,025,000 after acquiring an additional 675,013 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Hermes Investment Management Ltd. increased its holdings in Procter & Gamble by 19.0% in the second quarter. Hermes Investment Management Ltd. now owns 878,604 shares of the company’s stock valued at $76,570,000 after purchasing an additional 140,214 shares during the period. 59.65% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Procter & Gamble Company Profile

The Procter & Gamble Company is focused on providing branded consumer packaged goods to the consumers across the world. The Company operates through five segments: Beauty; Grooming; Health Care; Fabric & Home Care, and Baby, Feminine & Family Care. The Company sells its products in approximately 180 countries and territories primarily through mass merchandisers, grocery stores, membership club stores, drug stores, department stores, distributors, baby stores, specialty beauty stores, e-commerce, high-frequency stores and pharmacies.

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