Several other research analysts also recently issued reports on SLCA. BidaskClub upgraded shares of U.S. Silica from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Saturday, September 23rd. SunTrust Banks reissued a buy rating and set a $43.00 price objective (up from $35.00) on shares of U.S. Silica in a report on Thursday, September 28th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of U.S. Silica from a hold rating to a strong sell rating in a report on Monday, October 2nd. KeyCorp reissued an overweight rating and set a $40.00 price objective on shares of U.S. Silica in a report on Wednesday, October 4th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada set a $55.00 price objective on shares of U.S. Silica and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Saturday, October 7th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and twenty have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $48.76.
U.S. Silica (SLCA) traded up $0.40 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $36.25. 1,490,000 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 2,230,000. U.S. Silica has a 1-year low of $24.26 and a 1-year high of $61.49. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.39, a current ratio of 3.67 and a quick ratio of 3.26. The company has a market capitalization of $2,940.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 45.31 and a beta of 2.33.
U.S. Silica declared that its board has approved a stock buyback plan on Monday, November 6th that allows the company to buyback $100.00 million in shares. This buyback authorization allows the mining company to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, January 5th. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 15th were given a dividend of $0.063 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, December 14th. This represents a $0.25 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.70%. U.S. Silica’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 31.25%.
In related news, CEO Bryan Adair Shinn purchased 4,000 shares of U.S. Silica stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 20th. The shares were bought at an average price of $31.30 per share, with a total value of $125,200.00. Following the purchase, the chief executive officer now directly owns 88,807 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,779,659.10. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Bradford B. Casper sold 8,700 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.21, for a total transaction of $297,627.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 18,593 shares in the company, valued at approximately $636,066.53. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have acquired 7,900 shares of company stock valued at $256,063 in the last quarter. 1.00% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of SLCA. Riverhead Capital Management LLC increased its position in U.S. Silica by 69.0% during the 2nd quarter. Riverhead Capital Management LLC now owns 4,226 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $150,000 after purchasing an additional 1,726 shares during the period. QS Investors LLC increased its position in U.S. Silica by 0.3% during the 2nd quarter. QS Investors LLC now owns 6,128 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $217,000 after purchasing an additional 18 shares during the period. Sentry Investment Management LLC purchased a new position in U.S. Silica during the 2nd quarter valued at about $221,000. Verde Servicos Internacionais S.A. purchased a new position in U.S. Silica during the 3rd quarter valued at about $201,000. Finally, Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. increased its position in U.S. Silica by 13.3% during the 2nd quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. now owns 7,172 shares of the mining company’s stock valued at $255,000 after purchasing an additional 843 shares during the period.
About U.S. Silica
U.S. Silica Holdings, Inc is a domestic producer of commercial silica, a specialized mineral that is an input into a range of end markets. The Company operates in two segments: Oil & Gas Proppants, and Industrial & Specialty Products. In the Oil & Gas Proppants segment, it serves the oil and gas recovery market providing fracturing sand, or frac sand, which is pumped down oil and natural gas wells to prop open rock fissures and manage the flow rate of natural gas and oil from the wells.
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