MRC Global (NYSE:MRC) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Over the last month, MRC Global’s shares outperformed the industry. The company perceives that improving upstream and midstream businesses would strengthen its revenues in the quarters ahead. Moreover, meaningful organic deals are anticipated to generate near-term benefits. Also, continued inflation in line pipe prices would likely widen near-term margins. However, MRC Global’s third-quarter 2017 quarterly adjusted earnings of 2 cents per share missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 7 cents. Notably, quarterly revenues also missed the Consensus Estimate by 0.5%. Reduced customer spending might continue to hurt the company's International business in the quarters ahead. Moreover, further elevation in oil prices might dent its downstream business performances going forward. Over the last 7 days, Zacks Consensus Estimate for the stock remained unchanged for 2018.”

Several other analysts also recently commented on MRC. Cowen set a $24.00 price objective on MRC Global and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, October 6th. Robert W. Baird reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $21.00 price objective on shares of MRC Global in a research note on Monday, October 9th. Stifel Nicolaus reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $20.00 price objective on shares of MRC Global in a research note on Tuesday, October 17th. ValuEngine downgraded MRC Global from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, November 9th. Finally, Susquehanna Bancshares set a $21.00 price objective on MRC Global and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, January 12th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $20.67.

Shares of MRC Global (NYSE MRC) traded down $0.41 during trading hours on Wednesday, reaching $17.85. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 164,045 shares, compared to its average volume of 521,536. The company has a market capitalization of $1,752.65, a price-to-earnings ratio of -63.78, a P/E/G ratio of 1.95 and a beta of 1.60. The company has a current ratio of 2.31, a quick ratio of 1.16 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.57. MRC Global has a 1-year low of $14.01 and a 1-year high of $22.20.

MRC Global (NYSE:MRC) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 2nd. The oil and gas company reported $0.02 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.07 by ($0.05). MRC Global had a positive return on equity of 1.44% and a negative net margin of 0.09%. equities research analysts expect that MRC Global will post 0.09 earnings per share for the current year.

MRC Global announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback plan on Thursday, November 2nd that allows the company to buyback $100.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization allows the oil and gas company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are typically a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

In related news, CEO Andrew R. Lane sold 180,621 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, January 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $19.00, for a total transaction of $3,431,799.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Andrew R. Lane sold 293,154 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, January 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $19.00, for a total value of $5,569,926.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 6.30% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of MRC. MHI Funds LLC purchased a new stake in shares of MRC Global during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $171,000. Koch Industries Inc. bought a new position in MRC Global during the second quarter valued at $238,000. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd bought a new position in MRC Global during the third quarter valued at $276,000. Suntrust Banks Inc. grew its holdings in MRC Global by 1.2% during the second quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 18,307 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $302,000 after purchasing an additional 215 shares during the period. Finally, Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC grew its holdings in MRC Global by 2,026.6% during the third quarter. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC now owns 19,288 shares of the oil and gas company’s stock valued at $337,000 after purchasing an additional 18,381 shares during the period. 94.41% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About MRC Global

MRC Global Inc is an industrial distributor of pipe, valves and fittings and related products and services to the energy industry. The Company’s segments include the U.S., Canada and International. Its U.S. segment includes the United States Eastern Region and Gulf Coast, and the United States Western Region.

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