Colgate-Palmolive Co. (NYSE:CL) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Colgate is in good shape given its continued focus on product innovation, along with globally recognized brands and presence in both developed and emerging economies, which enables it to capture growth opportunities and boost profitability. Further, the company’s international brand recognition and innovative strategies underscore its inherent strength. The company’s cost savings programs are also delivering impressive results as evident from improving operating margins. In 2016, the company anticipates to deliver robust organic sales growth backed by new products across categories and geographical regions, which should translate into double-digits organic earnings per share growth. However, the company expects macroeconomic headwinds and currency woes to linger in 2016. Also, stiff competition remains a threat. Estimates have been largely stable ahead of the company’s third-quarter earnings release.”

A number of other research firms also recently weighed in on CL. B. Riley restated a “neutral” rating and issued a $71.00 target price on shares of Colgate-Palmolive in a research report on Wednesday, August 3rd. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. restated a “neutral” rating and issued a $76.00 target price (up from $74.00) on shares of Colgate-Palmolive in a research report on Friday, July 15th. Deutsche Bank AG reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $75.00 price target (up previously from $73.00) on shares of Colgate-Palmolive in a report on Sunday, July 24th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $75.00 price target on shares of Colgate-Palmolive in a report on Friday, July 29th. Finally, Exane BNP Paribas cut Colgate-Palmolive from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, July 29th. Fifteen equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $74.46.

Analyst Recommendations for Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE:CL)

Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE:CL) opened at 73.00 on Tuesday. Colgate-Palmolive has a one year low of $61.40 and a one year high of $75.38. The firm has a market cap of $65.08 billion, a PE ratio of 47.01 and a beta of 0.59. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $73.90 and a 200-day moving average price of $72.09.

Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE:CL) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $0.70 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.69 by $0.01. The firm earned $3.85 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.86 billion. Colgate-Palmolive had a return on equity of 1,980.28% and a net margin of 9.04%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 5.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.70 earnings per share. Equities analysts predict that Colgate-Palmolive will post $2.79 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 15th. Investors of record on Monday, October 24th will be issued a $0.39 dividend. This represents a $1.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.14%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, October 20th. Colgate-Palmolive’s dividend payout ratio is presently 100.65%.

In related news, CTO Patricia Verduin sold 3,666 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, July 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $74.98, for a total value of $274,876.68. Following the completion of the sale, the chief technology officer now directly owns 54,602 shares in the company, valued at $4,094,057.96. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, COO Franck J. Moison sold 15,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $75.16, for a total transaction of $1,127,400.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief operating officer now owns 188,029 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $14,132,259.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.05% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of CL. National Pension Service boosted its stake in shares of Colgate-Palmolive by 4.2% in the first quarter. National Pension Service now owns 448,007 shares of the company’s stock worth $31,652,000 after buying an additional 17,928 shares in the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc boosted its stake in shares of Colgate-Palmolive by 1.3% in the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 3,953,265 shares of the company’s stock worth $279,300,000 after buying an additional 50,393 shares in the last quarter. Aviva PLC boosted its stake in Colgate-Palmolive by 1.3% in the first quarter. Aviva PLC now owns 531,710 shares of the company’s stock worth $37,565,000 after buying an additional 7,069 shares during the period. Stelac Advisory Services LLC purchased a new stake in Colgate-Palmolive during the first quarter worth about $332,000. Finally, Tompkins Financial Corp boosted its stake in Colgate-Palmolive by 121.1% in the second quarter. Tompkins Financial Corp now owns 1,698 shares of the company’s stock worth $124,000 after buying an additional 930 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 72.97% of the company’s stock.

About Colgate-Palmolive

Colgate-Palmolive Company (Colgate) is a consumer products company, whose products are marketed in over 200 countries and territories throughout the world. The Company’s segments include Oral, Personal and Home Care, and Pet Nutrition. The Oral, Personal and Home Care product segment is operated through over five geographic segments, which include North America, Latin America, Europe/South Pacific, Asia and Africa/Eurasia.

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