Kadant Inc. (NYSE:KAI) has been given an average broker rating score of 1.67 (Buy) from the three brokers that cover the stock, Zacks Investment Research reports. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company. Kadant’s rating score has improved by 16.5% from 90 days ago as a result of a number of analysts’ ratings changes.

Analysts have set a 1 year consensus price target of $54.00 for the company and are anticipating that the company will post $0.64 EPS for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Zacks has also assigned Kadant an industry rank of 92 out of 265 based on the ratings given to related companies.

KAI has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. Seaport Global Securities downgraded shares of Kadant from an “accumulate” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $58.00 price objective for the company. in a research note on Friday, August 5th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Kadant from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 13th. William Blair initiated coverage on shares of Kadant in a research note on Friday. They set a “market perform” rating and a $49.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Barrington Research increased their price objective on shares of Kadant from $55.00 to $63.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, August 5th.

Kadant (NYSE:KAI) opened at 50.99 on Wednesday. Kadant has a 1-year low of $33.38 and a 1-year high of $56.57. The company has a market capitalization of $555.64 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.49 and a beta of 1.55. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $53.70 and a 200-day moving average price of $49.39.

Kadant (NYSE:KAI) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.88 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.65 by $0.23. Kadant had a net margin of 8.39% and a return on equity of 13.55%. The firm earned $111.83 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $104.44 million. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $0.78 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 13.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts predict that Kadant will post $3.04 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, November 10th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, October 13th will be issued a $0.19 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, October 11th. This represents a $0.76 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.49%. Kadant’s payout ratio is 24.60%.

In other news, Director Thomas C. Leonard sold 1,250 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $52.00, for a total value of $65,000.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 20,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,040,000. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director William P. Tully sold 3,750 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $51.85, for a total transaction of $194,437.50. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 5,000 shares in the company, valued at $259,250. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 5.80% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Royce & Associates LP boosted its stake in shares of Kadant by 64.5% in the second quarter. Royce & Associates LP now owns 846,967 shares of the company’s stock worth $43,627,000 after buying an additional 332,000 shares during the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its position in Kadant by 1.2% in the first quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 546,542 shares of the company’s stock valued at $24,681,000 after buying an additional 6,475 shares in the last quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. boosted its position in Kadant by 26.5% in the second quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 434,335 shares of the company’s stock valued at $22,373,000 after buying an additional 90,883 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in Kadant by 0.9% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 411,149 shares of the company’s stock valued at $21,178,000 after buying an additional 3,620 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Loomis Sayles & Co. L P boosted its position in Kadant by 18.4% in the first quarter. Loomis Sayles & Co. L P now owns 311,118 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,050,000 after buying an additional 48,446 shares in the last quarter. 87.85% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About Kadant

Kadant Inc is a supplier of equipment used in process industries. The process industries, including papermaking, paper recycling and oriented strand board (OSB), an engineered wood panel product used primarily in home construction. In addition, the Company manufactures granules made from papermaking byproducts.

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