Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Minerals Technologies (NYSE:MTX) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report report published on Friday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Minerals Technologies Inc. is a resource- and technology-based company that develops, produces and markets worldwide a broad range of specialty mineral, mineral-based and synthetic mineral products and related systems and services. The Company has five reportable segments: Specialty Minerals, Refractories, Performance Materials, Construction Technologies and Energy Services. “

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently commented on the company. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reiterated a buy rating and set a $260.00 target price on shares of Minerals Technologies in a report on Friday, October 25th. Independent Research reiterated a neutral rating and set a $234.00 target price on shares of Minerals Technologies in a report on Friday, October 25th. ValuEngine upgraded Minerals Technologies from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Saturday, September 14th. Berenberg Bank reiterated a neutral rating and set a $245.00 target price on shares of Minerals Technologies in a report on Friday, October 25th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group reiterated a neutral rating and set a $206.00 target price on shares of Minerals Technologies in a report on Friday, October 25th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $233.67.

NYSE:MTX traded down $1.22 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $53.60. 198,398 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 167,567. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $52.30 and its 200-day moving average is $53.37. The stock has a market cap of $1.99 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.07, a P/E/G ratio of 5.01 and a beta of 1.81. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.59, a current ratio of 2.24 and a quick ratio of 1.62. Minerals Technologies has a 1-year low of $45.26 and a 1-year high of $63.75.

Minerals Technologies (NYSE:MTX) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, October 31st. The basic materials company reported $1.06 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.01 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $449.30 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $449.43 million. Minerals Technologies had a return on equity of 11.08% and a net margin of 8.16%. Minerals Technologies’s quarterly revenue was down 3.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $1.27 EPS. As a group, research analysts predict that Minerals Technologies will post 4.21 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 12th. Stockholders of record on Monday, November 4th will be issued a dividend of $0.05 per share. This represents a $0.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.37%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, November 1st. Minerals Technologies’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 4.13%.

In other news, SVP Thomas J. Meek sold 7,502 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, August 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $45.90, for a total transaction of $344,341.80. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 65,752 shares in the company, valued at $3,018,016.80. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Douglas T. Dietrich acquired 1,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 29th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $47.99 per share, for a total transaction of $71,985.00. Following the acquisition, the chief executive officer now directly owns 71,841 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,447,649.59. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 2.50% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Point72 Hong Kong Ltd purchased a new position in shares of Minerals Technologies in the 2nd quarter worth $44,000. Quest Capital Management Inc. ADV purchased a new position in shares of Minerals Technologies in the 3rd quarter worth $74,000. First Mercantile Trust Co. raised its position in shares of Minerals Technologies by 11.6% in the 3rd quarter. First Mercantile Trust Co. now owns 2,050 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $109,000 after buying an additional 213 shares during the period. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC raised its position in shares of Minerals Technologies by 123.4% in the 2nd quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 2,933 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $157,000 after buying an additional 1,620 shares during the period. Finally, Wedge Capital Management L L P NC purchased a new position in shares of Minerals Technologies in the 3rd quarter worth $212,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 94.53% of the company’s stock.

About Minerals Technologies

Minerals Technologies Inc develops, produces, and markets various specialty mineral, mineral-based, and synthetic mineral products, and supporting systems and services worldwide. The company's Specialty Minerals segment produces and sells precipitated calcium carbonate and quicklime; and provides natural mineral products comprising limestone and talc.

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