Ferguson Wellman Capital Management Inc. purchased a new stake in Praxair, Inc. (NYSE:PX) during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor purchased 1,627 shares of the basic materials company’s stock, valued at approximately $216,000.

Several other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the company. DnB Asset Management AS boosted its stake in Praxair by 21.1% in the first quarter. DnB Asset Management AS now owns 33,903 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $4,021,000 after buying an additional 5,900 shares during the last quarter. Somerset Trust Co boosted its stake in Praxair by 2.0% in the first quarter. Somerset Trust Co now owns 9,919 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,177,000 after buying an additional 196 shares during the last quarter. Lodestar Investment Counsel LLC IL purchased a new stake in Praxair during the first quarter valued at about $231,000. Harvey Investment Co. LLC boosted its stake in Praxair by 0.9% in the first quarter. Harvey Investment Co. LLC now owns 6,482 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $769,000 after buying an additional 55 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Washington Trust Bank boosted its stake in Praxair by 16.4% in the first quarter. Washington Trust Bank now owns 15,200 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $1,803,000 after buying an additional 2,143 shares during the last quarter. 85.53% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Praxair, Inc. (PX) opened at 127.44 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $36.45 billion, a PE ratio of 23.87 and a beta of 0.93. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $132.46 and its 200-day moving average is $125.54. Praxair, Inc. has a 12 month low of $114.43 and a 12 month high of $138.69.

Praxair (NYSE:PX) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The basic materials company reported $1.46 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.43 by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $2.83 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.80 billion. Praxair had a net margin of 14.10% and a return on equity of 27.93%. The company’s revenue was up 6.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.39 EPS. On average, analysts expect that Praxair, Inc. will post $5.47 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 8th will be given a $0.7875 dividend. This represents a $3.15 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.47%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 6th. Praxair’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 58.88%.

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Several research firms recently issued reports on PX. J P Morgan Chase & Co restated an “overweight” rating and set a $156.00 price objective (up from $130.00) on shares of Praxair in a research report on Sunday, June 11th. Vertical Group upgraded shares of Praxair to a “hold” rating and raised their price objective for the stock from $123.00 to $127.00 in a research report on Wednesday, June 7th. BidaskClub cut shares of Praxair from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 25th. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “buy” rating and set a $162.00 price objective (up from $140.00) on shares of Praxair in a research report on Saturday, June 3rd. Finally, Vertical Research upgraded shares of Praxair to a “hold” rating and raised their price objective for the stock from $123.00 to $127.00 in a research report on Wednesday, June 7th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Praxair has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $135.00.

Praxair Company Profile

Praxair, Inc is an industrial gas company. The Company’s operations are organized into five segments, four of which have been determined on a geographic basis of segmentation: North America, Europe, South America and Asia. In addition, it operates its surface technologies business through its subsidiary, Praxair Surface Technologies, Inc, which represents the fifth segment.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Praxair (NYSE:PX)

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