W W Grainger (NYSE:GWW) had its price target reduced by investment analysts at Morgan Stanley from $273.00 to $258.00 in a report issued on Friday, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. The brokerage presently has an “underweight” rating on the industrial products company’s stock. Morgan Stanley’s price objective suggests a potential downside of 5.27% from the stock’s previous close.

A number of other analysts have also weighed in on the company. ValuEngine upgraded W W Grainger from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 6th. Gordon Haskett upgraded W W Grainger from an “underperform” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $264.58 target price for the company in a research note on Friday, May 17th. William Blair restated a “market perform” rating on shares of W W Grainger in a research note on Monday, April 22nd. Stephens set a $318.00 target price on W W Grainger and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 23rd. Finally, BMO Capital Markets lowered their target price on W W Grainger from $320.00 to $310.00 and set a “market perform” rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday, April 23rd. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have assigned a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $308.06.

Shares of NYSE:GWW opened at $272.36 on Friday. W W Grainger has a twelve month low of $255.09 and a twelve month high of $372.06. The firm has a market capitalization of $15.51 billion, a PE ratio of 16.31, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.37 and a beta of 0.96. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.97, a current ratio of 2.40 and a quick ratio of 1.36.

W W Grainger (NYSE:GWW) last announced its earnings results on Monday, April 22nd. The industrial products company reported $4.51 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $4.42 by $0.09. W W Grainger had a return on equity of 46.09% and a net margin of 7.12%. The company had revenue of $2.80 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.88 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $4.18 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 1.2% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts anticipate that W W Grainger will post 17.94 earnings per share for the current year.

W W Grainger announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Wednesday, April 24th that permits the company to repurchase 5,000,000 shares. This repurchase authorization permits the industrial products company to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. BlackRock Inc. increased its position in W W Grainger by 4.2% in the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 3,372,604 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $952,290,000 after purchasing an additional 135,674 shares during the period. Longview Partners Guernsey LTD increased its position in W W Grainger by 84.1% in the fourth quarter. Longview Partners Guernsey LTD now owns 3,155,394 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $890,957,000 after purchasing an additional 1,441,615 shares during the period. Ronna Sue Cohen increased its position in W W Grainger by 27,609.9% in the first quarter. Ronna Sue Cohen now owns 2,981,867 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $2,982,000 after purchasing an additional 2,971,106 shares during the period. Clearbridge Investments LLC increased its position in W W Grainger by 4.3% in the first quarter. Clearbridge Investments LLC now owns 2,229,414 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $670,897,000 after purchasing an additional 92,579 shares during the period. Finally, Northern Trust Corp increased its position in W W Grainger by 8.9% in the fourth quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 1,245,244 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $351,607,000 after purchasing an additional 101,464 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 74.45% of the company’s stock.

W W Grainger Company Profile

W.W. Grainger, Inc distributes maintenance, repair, and operating (MRO) products and services in the United States, Canada, Europe, Japan, Mexico, and internationally. The company provides material handling equipment, safety and security supplies, lighting and electrical products, power and hand tools, pumps and plumbing supplies, cleaning and maintenance supplies, and metalworking tools, as well as gloves, ladders, motors, and janitorial supplies.

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Analyst Recommendations for W W Grainger (NYSE:GWW)

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