Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Colgate-Palmolive Company (NYSE:CL) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note released on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Colgate has underperformed the broader industry in the last three months. While the company’s bottom-line trends remain impressive, its top line continues to suffer. The company’s sales fell short of expectations for the fifth straight quarter in the recently reported second-quarter 2017 due to the persistence of softness in North America and challenges in Asia-Pacific. Further, the company lagged sales estimates in 16 out of the trailing 17 quarters. Going forward, Colgate anticipates the backdrop to remain challenging due to uncertain global markets and slowing category growth worldwide. This aong with a soft first half 2017, led it to trim GAAP earnings guidance for 2017. Estimates witnessed a downtrend. However, Colgate remains encouraged by the progress on its 2012 Restructuring Program and expects additional opportunities identified under the program to help reach the higher end of its previously stated cost and savings view.”

CL has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Citigroup Inc. reiterated a neutral rating and set a $76.00 price objective (up previously from $75.00) on shares of Colgate-Palmolive in a research report on Friday, April 7th. Royal Bank Of Canada reiterated a hold rating and set a $74.00 price objective on shares of Colgate-Palmolive in a research report on Thursday, May 25th. UBS AG reiterated a neutral rating and set a $78.00 price objective (down previously from $79.00) on shares of Colgate-Palmolive in a research report on Tuesday, May 2nd. BidaskClub downgraded Colgate-Palmolive from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 12th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a hold rating and set a $79.00 price objective (up previously from $77.00) on shares of Colgate-Palmolive in a research report on Monday, July 24th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. Colgate-Palmolive presently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $75.82.

Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE:CL) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 21st. The company reported $0.72 EPS for the quarter, meeting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.72. Colgate-Palmolive had a return on equity of 3,121.95% and a net margin of 15.83%. The company had revenue of $3.83 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.89 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.70 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was down .5% compared to the same quarter last year.

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The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, August 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, July 18th will be issued a $0.40 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, July 14th. This represents a $1.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.21%. Colgate-Palmolive’s payout ratio is currently 59.48%.

In other news, insider Patricia Verduin sold 3,833 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $72.41, for a total value of $277,547.53. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 53,022 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,839,323.02. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Richard J. Kogan sold 8,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, May 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $71.92, for a total transaction of $575,360.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 73,065 shares in the company, valued at $5,254,834.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 29,666 shares of company stock valued at $2,144,371 in the last 90 days. Corporate insiders own 1.02% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its position in Colgate-Palmolive by 0.9% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 18,821,363 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,377,537,000 after buying an additional 169,798 shares during the period. Norges Bank bought a new position in Colgate-Palmolive during the fourth quarter worth $455,526,000. First Eagle Investment Management LLC increased its position in Colgate-Palmolive by 2.6% in the first quarter. First Eagle Investment Management LLC now owns 4,782,281 shares of the company’s stock worth $350,015,000 after buying an additional 122,983 shares during the period. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC increased its position in Colgate-Palmolive by 84.2% in the first quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 4,554,989 shares of the company’s stock worth $333,380,000 after buying an additional 2,082,262 shares during the period. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc increased its position in Colgate-Palmolive by 5.1% in the first quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 4,293,890 shares of the company’s stock worth $314,276,000 after buying an additional 208,905 shares during the period. 73.74% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Colgate-Palmolive

Colgate-Palmolive Company (Colgate) is a consumer products company. The Company operates in two product segments: Oral, Personal and Home Care, and Pet Nutrition. The Oral, Personal and Home Care product segment is operated through five geographic segments, which include North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Africa/Eurasia.

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Analyst Recommendations for Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE:CL)

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