Albemarle (NYSE:ALB) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Albemarle has outperformed the industry it belongs to over a year.  Albemarle remains focused on strengthening its lithium business. It is well placed to leverage strong expected growth in the battery-grade lithium market. The company should also gain from the synergies of Rockwood Holdings acquisition. Albemarle is also divesting non-core assets to boost growth opportunities and focus on its key businesses. Moreover, the company remains committed to deliver incremental returns to shareholders. However, Albemarle faces headwinds associated with higher expected operational costs and high tax rate in 2017. Moreover, unfavorable impacts of Hurricane Harvey may continue to affect its results.”

Other equities research analysts have also issued research reports about the stock. Royal Bank of Canada reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $149.00 price objective on shares of Albemarle in a research note on Wednesday, October 18th. KeyCorp increased their price objective on shares of Albemarle from $125.00 to $150.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, October 16th. Jefferies Group increased their price objective on shares of Albemarle from $144.00 to $156.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, September 21st. Instinet increased their price objective on shares of Albemarle from $134.00 to $146.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, September 18th. Finally, Loop Capital started coverage on shares of Albemarle in a research note on Thursday, September 28th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $150.00 price objective for the company. Eleven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Albemarle presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $128.45.

Albemarle (NYSE:ALB) traded up $2.51 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $132.08. 1,387,500 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,182,069. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.35, a quick ratio of 1.56 and a current ratio of 2.11. The stock has a market cap of $14,316.92, a price-to-earnings ratio of 32.07, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.96 and a beta of 1.69. Albemarle has a 52-week low of $85.60 and a 52-week high of $144.99.

Albemarle (NYSE:ALB) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, November 8th. The specialty chemicals company reported $1.08 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.07 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $755.00 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $732.19 million. Albemarle had a net margin of 30.07% and a return on equity of 11.61%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 15.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.91 EPS. analysts expect that Albemarle will post 4.46 earnings per share for the current year.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. boosted its holdings in Albemarle by 650.0% in the 3rd quarter. Thompson Davis & CO. Inc. now owns 750 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $102,000 after buying an additional 650 shares during the period. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. boosted its holdings in Albemarle by 2.1% in the 2nd quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 968 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $102,000 after buying an additional 20 shares during the period. Highlander Capital Management LLC bought a new position in Albemarle in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $106,000. Howe & Rusling Inc. boosted its holdings in Albemarle by 2,038.0% in the 3rd quarter. Howe & Rusling Inc. now owns 1,069 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $146,000 after buying an additional 1,019 shares during the period. Finally, Advisory Services Network LLC boosted its holdings in Albemarle by 43.7% in the 2nd quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 1,273 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $134,000 after buying an additional 387 shares during the period. 87.99% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Albemarle

Albemarle Corporation is a global developer, manufacturer and marketer of highly-engineered specialty chemicals. The Company operates through three segments: Lithium and Advanced Materials, Bromine Specialties and Refining Solutions. Lithium and Advanced Materials segment consist of two product categories: Lithium and Performance Catalyst Solutions.

Analyst Recommendations for Albemarle (NYSE:ALB)

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