Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of MSC Industrial Direct (NYSE:MSM) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report report published on Friday morning, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “MSC Industrial Direct Co., Inc. is one of the premier distributors of Metalworking and Maintenance, Repair and Operations (MRO) supplies to industrial customers throughout the United States. MSC distributes approximately 590,000 industrial products from approximately 3,000 suppliers to approximately 350,000 customers. MSC reaches its customers through a combination of approximately 27 million direct-mail catalogs and CD-ROMs, 96 branch sales offices, 927 sales people, the Internet and associations with some of the world’s most prominent B2B e-commerce portals. “

Several other research firms also recently issued reports on MSM. Buckingham Research set a $81.00 price target on shares of MSC Industrial Direct and gave the stock a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, April 11th. Robert W. Baird dropped their price target on shares of MSC Industrial Direct from $88.00 to $84.00 and set a neutral rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, April 11th. Gordon Haskett downgraded shares of MSC Industrial Direct from a buy rating to a hold rating and set a $72.02 price target on the stock. in a research note on Monday, June 10th. Wells Fargo & Co dropped their price target on shares of MSC Industrial Direct from $85.00 to $80.00 and set a market perform rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, April 11th. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of MSC Industrial Direct from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Thursday, May 9th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $86.56.

NYSE:MSM opened at $72.88 on Friday. The company has a current ratio of 2.19, a quick ratio of 1.18 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.20. The firm has a market cap of $4.02 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.35, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.31 and a beta of 0.96. MSC Industrial Direct has a twelve month low of $69.81 and a twelve month high of $90.83.

MSC Industrial Direct (NYSE:MSM) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, April 10th. The industrial products company reported $1.24 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.26 by ($0.02). The business had revenue of $823.00 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $826.98 million. MSC Industrial Direct had a net margin of 8.88% and a return on equity of 21.20%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $1.34 EPS. Sell-side analysts forecast that MSC Industrial Direct will post 5.55 EPS for the current year.

In other news, EVP Steven N. Baruch sold 5,404 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, April 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $82.00, for a total value of $443,128.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Douglas E. Jones sold 2,126 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, April 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $83.50, for a total transaction of $177,521.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 7,496 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $625,916. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 27.96% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in MSM. Investors Research Corp acquired a new position in shares of MSC Industrial Direct in the 1st quarter valued at about $25,000. Pearl River Capital LLC acquired a new position in MSC Industrial Direct during the 4th quarter valued at about $35,000. Quadrant Capital Group LLC boosted its stake in MSC Industrial Direct by 1,212.1% during the 1st quarter. Quadrant Capital Group LLC now owns 761 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $60,000 after purchasing an additional 703 shares during the period. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. boosted its stake in MSC Industrial Direct by 25.1% during the 4th quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 1,151 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $89,000 after purchasing an additional 231 shares during the period. Finally, NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc boosted its stake in MSC Industrial Direct by 71.4% during the 1st quarter. NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc now owns 1,200 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $98,000 after purchasing an additional 500 shares during the period. 76.20% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About MSC Industrial Direct

MSC Industrial Direct Co, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, distributes metalworking and maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) products in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The company's MRO products comprise cutting tools, measuring instruments, tooling components, metalworking products, fasteners, flat stock products, raw materials, abrasives, machinery hand and power tools, safety and janitorial supplies, plumbing supplies, materials handling products, power transmission components, and electrical supplies.

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