Ameriprise Financial Inc. trimmed its holdings in shares of Stepan Company (NYSE:SCL) by 2.0% during the third quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 135,173 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 2,824 shares during the period. Ameriprise Financial Inc. owned about 0.60% of Stepan worth $11,309,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Advisor Group Inc. raised its stake in shares of Stepan by 455.2% during the 2nd quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 1,177 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $102,000 after purchasing an additional 965 shares during the period. Acrospire Investment Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Stepan by 224.9% during the 2nd quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 1,589 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $138,000 after purchasing an additional 1,100 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its stake in Stepan by 17.6% in the 2nd quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 2,254 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $196,000 after acquiring an additional 337 shares during the period. Amalgamated Bank raised its stake in Stepan by 3.9% in the 2nd quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 2,757 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $240,000 after acquiring an additional 104 shares during the period. Finally, Suntrust Banks Inc. raised its stake in Stepan by 4.7% in the 2nd quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 3,275 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $285,000 after acquiring an additional 146 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 63.19% of the company’s stock.

In other news, VP Debra Stefaniak sold 818 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $82.66, for a total transaction of $67,615.88. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 6,616 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $546,878.56. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP Arthur W. Mergner sold 1,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $81.16, for a total value of $81,160.00. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 2,960 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $240,233.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 2,650 shares of company stock worth $215,793. Company insiders own 13.10% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Stepan Company (NYSE:SCL) opened at $80.18 on Wednesday. Stepan Company has a 52-week low of $68.51 and a 52-week high of $92.97. The firm has a market capitalization of $1,805.86, a PE ratio of 19.46 and a beta of 1.29. The company has a current ratio of 2.64, a quick ratio of 2.08 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38.

Stepan (NYSE:SCL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The basic materials company reported $0.92 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.09 by ($0.17). Stepan had a net margin of 4.81% and a return on equity of 13.98%. The company had revenue of $487.81 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $469.75 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.06 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 9.6% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts predict that Stepan Company will post 4.3 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 15th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, November 30th were given a dividend of $0.225 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, November 29th. This is a boost from Stepan’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.21. This represents a $0.90 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.12%. Stepan’s dividend payout ratio is currently 23.32%.

A number of equities research analysts recently issued reports on SCL shares. KeyCorp restated a “hold” rating on shares of Stepan in a research note on Friday, September 1st. National Bank Financial upgraded Stepan from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and boosted their price objective for the company from $27.00 to $35.00 in a research note on Wednesday, October 11th. Zacks Investment Research cut Stepan from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, October 20th. Scotiabank upgraded Stepan from an “underperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating and set a $32.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, November 14th. Finally, TD Securities restated a “buy” rating and issued a $33.00 price objective on shares of Stepan in a research note on Sunday, September 24th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating, three have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $35.60.

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About Stepan

Stepan Company produces specialty and intermediate chemicals, which are sold to other manufacturers and used in a range of end products. The Company operates through three segments: Surfactants, Polymers and Specialty Products. The Company’s principal markets include manufacturers of cleaning and washing compounds (including detergents, shampoos, fabric softeners, toothpastes and household cleaners), paints, cosmetics, food, beverages, nutritional supplements, agricultural products and plastics.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Stepan (NYSE:SCL)

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