A. O. Smith (NYSE:AOS) Earns Hold Rating from Analysts at Jefferies Financial Group

Jefferies Financial Group began coverage on shares of A. O. Smith (NYSE:AOS) in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday, The Fly reports. The firm issued a hold rating on the industrial products company’s stock. Jefferies Financial Group also issued estimates for A. O. Smith’s Q2 2019 earnings at $0.64 EPS, Q3 2019 earnings at $0.72 EPS, Q4 2019 earnings at $0.77 EPS, FY2019 earnings at $2.66 EPS, Q1 2020 earnings at $0.60 EPS, Q2 2020 earnings at $0.67 EPS, Q3 2020 earnings at $0.75 EPS, Q4 2020 earnings at $0.80 EPS, FY2020 earnings at $2.82 EPS, Q1 2021 earnings at $0.61 EPS, Q2 2021 earnings at $0.69 EPS, FY2021 earnings at $2.87 EPS and FY2022 earnings at $2.93 EPS.

AOS has been the topic of several other research reports. Edward Jones lowered A. O. Smith from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Monday, May 20th. Robert W. Baird upped their price target on Cerner from $67.00 to $71.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 10th. KeyCorp upped their price target on Stitch Fix from $38.00 to $40.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a research note on Tuesday, March 12th. Boenning Scattergood reaffirmed a hold rating on shares of Peoples Bancorp in a research note on Wednesday, May 1st. Finally, ValuEngine lowered Xylem from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Tuesday, May 14th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the stock. A. O. Smith has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $56.11.

Shares of NYSE:AOS opened at $45.19 on Wednesday. The company has a current ratio of 2.25, a quick ratio of 1.82 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.18. The company has a fifty day moving average of $44.78. The stock has a market cap of $7.41 billion, a PE ratio of 17.31, a P/E/G ratio of 1.90 and a beta of 1.56. A. O. Smith has a 52-week low of $40.34 and a 52-week high of $61.08.

A. O. Smith (NYSE:AOS) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, April 30th. The industrial products company reported $0.53 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.57 by ($0.04). A. O. Smith had a net margin of 13.81% and a return on equity of 25.01%. The company had revenue of $748.20 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $764.16 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.60 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 5.1% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts predict that A. O. Smith will post 2.68 EPS for the current year.

A. O. Smith declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock buyback plan on Monday, June 3rd that allows the company to repurchase $300.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the industrial products company to buy up to 4.3% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, August 15th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, July 31st will be paid a $0.22 dividend. This represents a $0.88 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.95%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, July 30th. A. O. Smith’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 33.72%.

In related news, Director Ronald D. Brown sold 8,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $52.45, for a total transaction of $419,600.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 35,896 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,882,745.20. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, VP Paul R. Dana sold 9,010 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $52.76, for a total value of $475,367.60. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 14,912 shares in the company, valued at approximately $786,757.12. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 18,010 shares of company stock worth $944,468. 1.03% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Impax Asset Management Group plc lifted its stake in A. O. Smith by 51.1% during the 4th quarter. Impax Asset Management Group plc now owns 4,283,691 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $182,914,000 after acquiring an additional 1,448,313 shares in the last quarter. Norges Bank acquired a new position in A. O. Smith during the 4th quarter worth about $122,493,000. Ceredex Value Advisors LLC lifted its stake in A. O. Smith by 24.6% during the 1st quarter. Ceredex Value Advisors LLC now owns 2,399,504 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $127,941,000 after acquiring an additional 473,546 shares in the last quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN lifted its stake in A. O. Smith by 0.8% during the 1st quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 2,111,916 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $112,606,000 after acquiring an additional 17,320 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Two Sigma Investments LP lifted its stake in A. O. Smith by 432.1% during the 4th quarter. Two Sigma Investments LP now owns 2,075,448 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $88,622,000 after acquiring an additional 1,685,430 shares in the last quarter. 75.08% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

A. O. Smith Company Profile

A. O. Smith Corporation manufactures and markets residential and commercial gas and electric water heaters, boilers, tanks, and water treatment products in North America, China, Europe, and India. It operates through two segments, North America and Rest of World. The company offers water heaters for residences, restaurants, hotels and motels, office buildings, laundries, car washes, and small businesses; residential and commercial boilers for space heating applications in hospitals, schools, hotels, and other commercial buildings; and water treatment products, including on-the-go filtration bottles, point-of-use carbon and reverse osmosis products, point-of-entry water softeners, and whole-home water filtration products for residences, restaurants, hotels, and offices.

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Analyst Recommendations for A. O. Smith (NYSE:AOS)

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