Equities researchers at Morgan Stanley began coverage on shares of Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday. The brokerage set an “equal weight” rating and a $120.00 price target on the specialty chemicals company’s stock. Morgan Stanley’s price target would indicate a potential upside of 7.49% from the company’s current price.

Other research analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. Johnson Rice initiated coverage on Westlake Chemical in a research note on Monday, November 6th. They set an “accumulate” rating and a $100.00 price target on the stock. SunTrust Banks restated a “buy” rating and set a $93.00 price target on shares of Westlake Chemical in a research note on Friday, November 3rd. Citigroup initiated coverage on Westlake Chemical in a research note on Tuesday, October 24th. They set a “buy” rating and a $97.00 price target on the stock. Nomura upgraded Westlake Chemical from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $98.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, September 26th. Finally, Instinet upgraded Westlake Chemical from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 26th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating, ten have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $103.07.

Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) opened at $111.64 on Tuesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.74, a quick ratio of 1.59 and a current ratio of 2.31. Westlake Chemical has a 52 week low of $57.73 and a 52 week high of $111.72. The company has a market capitalization of $14,410.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.22, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.56 and a beta of 1.72.

In other news, CEO Albert Chao sold 45,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, November 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $94.76, for a total transaction of $4,264,200.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 299,018 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $28,334,945.68. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Chairman James Chao sold 76,135 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, November 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $94.69, for a total value of $7,209,223.15. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 129,078 shares in the company, valued at approximately $12,222,395.82. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 293,122 shares of company stock worth $27,721,443 in the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 72.50% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. GSA Capital Partners LLP purchased a new position in Westlake Chemical in the third quarter valued at $326,000. Tortoise Capital Advisors L.L.C. increased its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 6,376.2% in the third quarter. Tortoise Capital Advisors L.L.C. now owns 1,360 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $113,000 after buying an additional 1,339 shares during the last quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System increased its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 1.6% in the third quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 115,384 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $9,587,000 after buying an additional 1,784 shares during the last quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. increased its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 2,024.0% in the third quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 4,779 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $397,000 after buying an additional 4,554 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Highbridge Capital Management LLC increased its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 60.7% in the third quarter. Highbridge Capital Management LLC now owns 198,511 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $16,494,000 after buying an additional 75,000 shares during the last quarter. 30.41% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Westlake Chemical Company Profile

Westlake Chemical Corporation is a global manufacturer and marketer of basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers and building products. The Company’s products include a range of chemicals, which are fundamental to various consumer and industrial markets, including flexible and rigid packaging, automotive products, coatings, water treatment, refrigerants, residential and commercial construction, as well as other durable and non-durable goods.

Analyst Recommendations for Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK)

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