WestRock Co (NYSE:WRK) was the target of a large increase in short interest during the month of December. As of December 15th, there was short interest totalling 3,593,475 shares, an increase of 59.4% from the November 30th total of 2,253,762 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 2,030,861 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 1.8 days. Currently, 1.4% of the company’s stock are short sold.
In related news, EVP Jennifer Graham-Johnson sold 7,700 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $59.23, for a total value of $456,071.00. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Director John A. Luke, Jr. sold 10,343 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $60.74, for a total value of $628,233.82. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 497,557 shares in the company, valued at $30,221,612.18. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 141,102 shares of company stock worth $8,578,618. Company insiders own 2.20% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Mckinley Capital Management LLC Delaware purchased a new position in WestRock in the second quarter worth $100,000. Sun Life Financial INC grew its holdings in WestRock by 26,114.3% in the second quarter. Sun Life Financial INC now owns 1,835 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $104,000 after purchasing an additional 1,828 shares during the last quarter. Invictus RG purchased a new position in WestRock in the third quarter worth $108,000. Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. purchased a new stake in shares of WestRock during the third quarter valued at $130,000. Finally, Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. grew its holdings in shares of WestRock by 25.0% during the second quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 2,548 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $144,000 after buying an additional 509 shares during the last quarter. 87.73% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
WestRock (NYSE:WRK) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 2nd. The basic materials company reported $0.87 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.81 by $0.06. The company had revenue of $4.06 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.13 billion. WestRock had a net margin of 4.77% and a return on equity of 6.73%. WestRock’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.71 earnings per share. analysts forecast that WestRock will post 3.79 EPS for the current fiscal year.
A number of research analysts have recently weighed in on the company. Stephens assumed coverage on WestRock in a research report on Tuesday, October 24th. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $61.00 price objective for the company. KeyCorp restated a “hold” rating on shares of WestRock in a research report on Wednesday, October 11th. Barclays reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of WestRock in a research report on Friday, November 10th. BMO Capital Markets lifted their price target on WestRock to $68.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Tuesday, December 12th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $65.00 price target on shares of WestRock in a research report on Monday, September 25th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, nine have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $67.09.
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WestRock Company, incorporated on March 6, 2015, is a multinational provider of paper and packaging solutions for consumer and corrugated packaging markets. The Company also develops real estate in the Charleston, South Carolina region. The Company’s segments include Corrugated Packaging, Consumer Packaging, and Land and Development.
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