J P Morgan Chase & Co cut shares of Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) (NYSE:SMG) from an overweight rating to a neutral rating in a research report sent to investors on Wednesday morning, MarketBeat Ratings reports. The firm currently has $99.00 target price on the basic materials company’s stock.

SMG has been the subject of a number of other reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. KeyCorp reiterated a hold rating on shares of Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) in a research report on Monday, August 28th. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 25th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $101.33.

Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (SMG) traded up $0.59 during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $98.63. The stock had a trading volume of 313,300 shares, compared to its average volume of 323,339. The company has a quick ratio of 1.21, a current ratio of 1.62 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.90. The company has a market cap of $5,761.08, a P/E ratio of 23.54, a P/E/G ratio of 2.34 and a beta of 0.37. Scotts Miracle-Gro Company has a 52-week low of $81.48 and a 52-week high of $102.50.

Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) (NYSE:SMG) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, November 7th. The basic materials company reported ($0.26) EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.30) by $0.04. The firm had revenue of $376.70 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $368.50 million. Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) had a return on equity of 37.81% and a net margin of 7.51%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 8.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned ($0.30) EPS. equities analysts expect that Scotts Miracle-Gro Company will post 4.3 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 8th. Investors of record on Friday, November 24th will be issued a dividend of $0.53 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, November 22nd. This represents a $2.12 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.15%. Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The)’s payout ratio is presently 58.89%.

In related news, Chairman James Hagedorn sold 92,357 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, August 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $96.41, for a total transaction of $8,904,138.37. Following the sale, the chairman now owns 115,867 shares in the company, valued at approximately $11,170,737.47. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, CFO Thomas Randal Coleman sold 1,226 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, October 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $99.67, for a total value of $122,195.42. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 163,053 shares of company stock worth $15,610,752 in the last 90 days. 28.16% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Almanack Investment Partners LLC. purchased a new stake in Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) during the 2nd quarter valued at $132,000. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank increased its stake in Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) by 7.5% in the second quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 1,664 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $149,000 after purchasing an additional 116 shares during the period. Delta Asset Management LLC TN increased its stake in Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) by 3.8% in the second quarter. Delta Asset Management LLC TN now owns 2,025 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $181,000 after purchasing an additional 75 shares during the period. Creative Planning increased its stake in Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) by 44.5% in the second quarter. Creative Planning now owns 2,097 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $188,000 after purchasing an additional 646 shares during the period. Finally, Maple Capital Management Inc. purchased a new stake in Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) in the second quarter worth $207,000. Institutional investors own 68.76% of the company’s stock.

Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (The) Company Profile

The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (Scotts Miracle-Gro) is a manufacturer and marketer of branded consumer lawn and garden products. The Company’s segments include Global Consumer. In North America, its brands include Scotts and Turf Builder lawn and grass seed products; Miracle-Gro, Nature’s Care, Scotts, LiquaFeed and Osmocote gardening and landscape products; and Ortho, Roundup, Home Defense and Tomcat branded insect control, weed control and rodent control products.

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