Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Compass Minerals International (NYSE:CMP) to Strong Sell

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Compass Minerals International (NYSE:CMP) from a hold rating to a strong sell rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday, February 21st.

According to Zacks, “Compass Minerals is a leading provider of essential minerals that solve nature’s challenges, including salt for winter roadway safety and other consumer, industrial and agricultural uses, and specialty plant nutrition minerals that improve the quality and yield of crops. The company produces its minerals at locations throughout the U.S., Canada, Brazil and the U.K. It operates in three segments: Salt, Plant Nutrition North America, and Plant Nutrition South America. “

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Several other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports on CMP. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $84.00 target price on shares of Compass Minerals International in a research note on Wednesday, November 1st. TheStreet raised shares of Compass Minerals International from a c+ rating to a b rating in a research note on Thursday, November 30th. Credit Suisse Group cut shares of Compass Minerals International from a neutral rating to an underperform rating and lifted their target price for the stock from $59.72 to $60.00 in a research note on Wednesday, February 14th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reduced their price target on Compass Minerals International from $75.00 to $70.00 and set a market perform rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, February 15th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, one has issued a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $71.00.

Shares of CMP stock traded down $0.20 on Wednesday, reaching $62.05. 855,010 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 403,191. Compass Minerals International has a 52 week low of $56.50 and a 52 week high of $76.65. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.92, a quick ratio of 1.67 and a current ratio of 2.75. The firm has a market cap of $2,099.28, a PE ratio of 49.64 and a beta of 0.69.

Compass Minerals International (NYSE:CMP) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, February 13th. The basic materials company reported $1.66 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.37 by $0.29. Compass Minerals International had a net margin of 3.13% and a return on equity of 13.02%. The company had revenue of $457.90 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $468.52 million. sell-side analysts predict that Compass Minerals International will post 2.91 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, March 15th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, March 1st were issued a dividend of $0.72 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, February 28th. This represents a $2.88 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.64%. Compass Minerals International’s dividend payout ratio is presently 230.40%.

In other news, insider Francis Joseph Malecha sold 1,572 shares of Compass Minerals International stock in a transaction on Monday, March 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $63.21, for a total transaction of $99,366.12. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. In the last quarter, insiders have sold 2,229 shares of company stock worth $140,895. Insiders own 0.78% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. BlackRock Inc. raised its holdings in Compass Minerals International by 1.3% in the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 3,608,533 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $260,716,000 after buying an additional 47,863 shares during the period. OppenheimerFunds Inc. raised its holdings in Compass Minerals International by 28.6% in the 4th quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 1,912,663 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $138,190,000 after buying an additional 425,753 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its holdings in Compass Minerals International by 23.3% in the 2nd quarter. State Street Corp now owns 1,615,191 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $105,474,000 after buying an additional 305,111 shares during the period. Janus Henderson Group PLC raised its holdings in Compass Minerals International by 32.2% in the 3rd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 1,486,825 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $96,495,000 after buying an additional 361,985 shares during the period. Finally, River Road Asset Management LLC raised its holdings in Compass Minerals International by 2.4% in the 4th quarter. River Road Asset Management LLC now owns 892,475 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $64,481,000 after buying an additional 20,947 shares during the period.

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Compass Minerals International Company Profile

Compass Minerals International, Inc (CMI) is a provider of essential minerals that solve nature’s challenges, including salt for winter roadway safety and other consumer, industrial and agricultural uses; specialty plant nutrition minerals for the quality and yield of crops, and specialty chemicals for water treatment and other industrial processes.

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Analyst Recommendations for Compass Minerals International (NYSE:CMP)

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