Vulcan Materials (NYSE:VMC) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Sustained growth in private as well as public construction activity bodes well for Vulcan Materials. Strong aggregate reserve position, pricing power, divestiture of non-strategic operations and systematic inorganic strategy for expansion are also encouraging. Notably, the company’s shares have outperformed the industry year to date. However, the company is susceptible to unfavorable weather conditions, as most of its products are used outdoors in the public or private construction industry. Also, the company is experiencing higher diesel and liquid asphalt prices. Earnings estimates for 2018 and 2019 have moved down over the past 30 days, reflecting analysts’ concern surrounding the stock.”

Several other equities research analysts have also weighed in on the company. Bank of America lowered their price objective on Vulcan Materials from $130.00 to $128.00 and set a “hold” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, August 1st. Jefferies Financial Group upgraded Vulcan Materials from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $128.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, August 1st. Royal Bank of Canada upgraded Vulcan Materials from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $97.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, August 1st. They noted that the move was a valuation call. ValuEngine lowered Vulcan Materials from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 26th. Finally, Argus decreased their price target on Vulcan Materials to $122.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research report on Monday, August 20th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $131.11.

Shares of VMC stock traded up $1.41 during trading hours on Wednesday, hitting $114.28. The company had a trading volume of 86,417 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,322,675. Vulcan Materials has a 12 month low of $106.10 and a 12 month high of $141.20. The firm has a market cap of $14.71 billion, a P/E ratio of 37.59, a P/E/G ratio of 1.05 and a beta of 0.95. The company has a current ratio of 1.46, a quick ratio of 0.96 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.55.

Vulcan Materials (NYSE:VMC) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 31st. The construction company reported $1.23 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.37 by ($0.14). Vulcan Materials had a net margin of 15.72% and a return on equity of 9.46%. The company had revenue of $1.20 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.15 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.89 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 16.4% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts forecast that Vulcan Materials will post 4.3 EPS for the current year.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Mount Yale Investment Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in Vulcan Materials by 90.1% during the 2nd quarter. Mount Yale Investment Advisors LLC now owns 960 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $124,000 after buying an additional 455 shares in the last quarter. Smithfield Trust Co. lifted its holdings in Vulcan Materials by 160.5% during the 2nd quarter. Smithfield Trust Co. now owns 1,201 shares of the construction company’s stock worth $155,000 after buying an additional 740 shares in the last quarter. Piedmont Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new position in Vulcan Materials during the 2nd quarter worth $194,000. Advisor Partners LLC acquired a new position in Vulcan Materials during the 2nd quarter worth $201,000. Finally, Ausdal Financial Partners Inc. acquired a new position in Vulcan Materials during the 2nd quarter worth $205,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 97.04% of the company’s stock.

Vulcan Materials Company Profile

Vulcan Materials Company produces and supplies construction aggregates, asphalt mix, and ready-mixed concrete primarily in the United States. It operates through four segments: Aggregates, Asphalt, Concrete, and Calcium. The Aggregates segment provides crushed stone, sand and gravel, sand, and other aggregates; and related products and services for use in the construction and maintenance of highways, streets, and other public works, as well as in the construction of housing and commercial, industrial, and other nonresidential facilities.

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Analyst Recommendations for Vulcan Materials (NYSE:VMC)

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