Armstrong World Industries (NYSE:AWI) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Monday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Armstrong World have broadly outperformed its industry in a year's time frame. Higher price realization, strong repair and remodel activity along with the continuation of new building construction activity bode well for Armstrong World. However, earnings estimates have declined for 2019 over the past seven days, depicting analysts' concern for the company's earnings growth potential. Higher freight and raw material costs are dampening company’s earnings over the past few quarters. The steel and aluminum tariffs announced in 2018 continued to impact its material costs. Moreover, operational headwinds in the company’s manufacturing facilities along with stretched valuation raise concern.”

Several other research analysts have also commented on the stock. Bank of America raised shares of Armstrong World Industries from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $75.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Friday, January 4th. Zelman & Associates raised shares of Armstrong World Industries from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $73.05 target price for the company in a research note on Wednesday, March 6th. KeyCorp boosted their target price on shares of Armstrong World Industries from $76.00 to $83.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, February 26th. Nomura reissued a “neutral” rating and set a $76.00 target price (up from $73.00) on shares of Armstrong World Industries in a research note on Monday, March 4th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Armstrong World Industries from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, February 25th. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Armstrong World Industries currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $78.26.

NYSE AWI opened at $88.46 on Monday. The company has a quick ratio of 1.26, a current ratio of 1.37 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.93. The firm has a market cap of $4.20 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.17, a PEG ratio of 1.20 and a beta of 1.84. Armstrong World Industries has a 52 week low of $54.34 and a 52 week high of $88.56.

Armstrong World Industries (NYSE:AWI) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, February 25th. The construction company reported $0.80 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.84 by ($0.04). The firm had revenue of $238.90 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $239.46 million. Armstrong World Industries had a return on equity of 54.86% and a net margin of 19.06%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 11.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.50 earnings per share. Analysts predict that Armstrong World Industries will post 4.43 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, insider Valueact Capital Master Fund, sold 1,725,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $73.69, for a total transaction of $127,115,250.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Holdings L.P. Valueact sold 456,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, March 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $73.25, for a total transaction of $33,402,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.94% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Jane Street Group LLC lifted its stake in Armstrong World Industries by 1,231.8% in the fourth quarter. Jane Street Group LLC now owns 62,357 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $3,630,000 after acquiring an additional 57,675 shares during the period. Cipher Capital LP purchased a new stake in Armstrong World Industries in the fourth quarter worth about $263,000. Csenge Advisory Group purchased a new stake in Armstrong World Industries in the third quarter worth about $368,000. First Hawaiian Bank lifted its stake in Armstrong World Industries by 18.5% in the fourth quarter. First Hawaiian Bank now owns 8,525 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $496,000 after acquiring an additional 1,330 shares during the period. Finally, APG Asset Management N.V. purchased a new stake in Armstrong World Industries in the fourth quarter worth about $1,451,000. 98.39% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Armstrong World Industries

Armstrong World Industries, Inc designs, manufactures, and sells ceiling systems primarily for use in the construction and renovation of residential and commercial buildings in the United States, Canada, and Latin America. The company operates through Mineral Fiber and Architectural Specialties segments.

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