William Blair began coverage on shares of MSA Safety (NYSE:MSA) in a research note issued to investors on Thursday, MarketBeat Ratings reports. The brokerage issued a market perform rating and a $98.30 price objective on the industrial products company’s stock.

A number of other research firms have also weighed in on MSA. Stifel Nicolaus reissued a buy rating and issued a $115.00 target price on shares of MSA Safety in a research note on Wednesday, December 19th. ValuEngine upgraded MSA Safety from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Friday, December 21st. Zacks Investment Research cut MSA Safety from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Thursday, January 3rd. Finally, Robert W. Baird cut MSA Safety from an outperform rating to a neutral rating and lowered their price target for the company from $107.00 to $98.00 in a report on Friday, December 21st. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $100.83.

Shares of MSA stock traded down $0.44 during trading hours on Thursday, reaching $97.96. The company had a trading volume of 158,100 shares, compared to its average volume of 190,150. The company has a quick ratio of 1.59, a current ratio of 2.19 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.56. The firm has a market capitalization of $3.78 billion, a PE ratio of 25.31 and a beta of 1.34. MSA Safety has a 12 month low of $71.47 and a 12 month high of $110.83.

MSA Safety (NYSE:MSA) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, October 24th. The industrial products company reported $1.16 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.05 by $0.11. The business had revenue of $331.10 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $325.53 million. MSA Safety had a return on equity of 28.12% and a net margin of 4.94%. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that MSA Safety will post 4.53 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, CFO Kenneth D. Krause sold 1,572 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $107.00, for a total transaction of $168,204.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 18,721 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,003,147. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, insider Douglas K. Mcclaine sold 10,568 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $106.61, for a total transaction of $1,126,654.48. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 32,499 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,464,718.39. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 35,226 shares of company stock valued at $3,755,082 over the last quarter. Insiders own 9.90% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of MSA. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management acquired a new stake in MSA Safety during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $115,000. Parametrica Management Ltd purchased a new position in MSA Safety during the 3rd quarter worth $202,000. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC grew its position in MSA Safety by 672.5% during the 3rd quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 1,939 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $206,000 after purchasing an additional 1,688 shares during the last quarter. Strs Ohio lifted its stake in shares of MSA Safety by 50.0% in the 2nd quarter. Strs Ohio now owns 3,000 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $289,000 after acquiring an additional 1,000 shares during the period. Finally, Emerald Advisers Inc. PA acquired a new stake in shares of MSA Safety in the 3rd quarter worth $400,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 71.84% of the company’s stock.

MSA Safety Company Profile

MSA Safety Incorporated develops, manufactures, and supplies safety products that protect people and facility infrastructures in the oil, gas, petrochemical, fire service, construction, utilities, and mining industries worldwide. It operates through Americas and International segments. The company's core product offerings include permanently installed fixed gas and flame detection instruments, such as permanently installed gas detection monitoring systems, and flame detectors and open-path infrared gas detectors, as well as replacement components and related services to detect the presence or absence of various gases in the air.

Featured Article: Capital gains and your 401(k) or IRA

Receive News & Ratings for MSA Safety Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for MSA Safety and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.