Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE:WHR) Lowered to Strong Sell at Zacks Investment Research

Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE:WHR) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report issued on Friday, October 27th.

According to Zacks, “Continuing with its trend of reporting dismal earnings surprises, Whirlpool posted fifth consecutive earnings miss in third-quarter 2017. Moreover, top line lagged estimates for the second straight time. Adjusted operating margin was hurt by adverse product price/mix and raw material inflation, which is likely to continue throughout 2018. While both top and bottom line improved year over year, management slashed earnings guidance for 2017 on expectations of higher raw material inflation and unfavorable price/mix that led to a downtrend in estimates. However, management reiterated its 2020 goals and remains optimistic about ongoing growth initiatives as well as global cost-based pricing and fixed cost reduction strategies. This has helped the company outperform the broader industry in the last three months. Additionally, Whirlpool’s innovation strategy that helps it to tap incremental sales and gain market share, bodes well.”

Several other research firms have also recently weighed in on WHR. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Whirlpool Corporation from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. Royal Bank Of Canada lowered shares of Whirlpool Corporation from a “top pick” rating to a “sector perform” rating and reduced their target price for the company from $209.00 to $184.00 in a report on Tuesday, October 24th. BidaskClub lowered shares of Whirlpool Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 2nd. MKM Partners set a $177.00 price target on shares of Whirlpool Corporation and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, October 6th. Finally, Bank of America Corporation cut shares of Whirlpool Corporation from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $183.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, October 24th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Whirlpool Corporation has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $184.67.

Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE:WHR) traded down $0.67 during trading on Friday, hitting $161.00. 620,100 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 847,130. The company has a market cap of $11,618.06, a P/E ratio of 11.54, a P/E/G ratio of 1.57 and a beta of 1.87. The company has a quick ratio of 0.55, a current ratio of 0.90 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.65. Whirlpool Corporation has a 1 year low of $159.71 and a 1 year high of $202.99.

Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE:WHR) last posted its earnings results on Monday, October 23rd. The company reported $3.83 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $3.90 by ($0.07). Whirlpool Corporation had a return on equity of 18.45% and a net margin of 3.76%. The firm had revenue of $5.42 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.50 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $3.66 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.2% compared to the same quarter last year. research analysts expect that Whirlpool Corporation will post 13.7 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Whirlpool Corporation announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase program on Wednesday, July 26th that authorizes the company to repurchase $2.35 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to repurchase up to 16.7% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

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Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its stake in shares of Whirlpool Corporation by 0.3% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 7,314,502 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,401,605,000 after acquiring an additional 23,724 shares during the period. Greenhaven Associates Inc. grew its position in Whirlpool Corporation by 0.8% during the third quarter. Greenhaven Associates Inc. now owns 2,759,675 shares of the company’s stock valued at $508,994,000 after buying an additional 22,525 shares during the period. Harris Associates L P grew its position in Whirlpool Corporation by 12.5% during the second quarter. Harris Associates L P now owns 2,180,839 shares of the company’s stock valued at $417,892,000 after buying an additional 241,659 shares during the period. Diamond Hill Capital Management Inc. grew its position in Whirlpool Corporation by 7.1% during the third quarter. Diamond Hill Capital Management Inc. now owns 1,837,517 shares of the company’s stock valued at $338,912,000 after buying an additional 122,189 shares during the period. Finally, Evercore Trust Company N.A. grew its position in Whirlpool Corporation by 4.1% during the third quarter. Evercore Trust Company N.A. now owns 1,355,246 shares of the company’s stock valued at $249,962,000 after buying an additional 53,819 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 93.39% of the company’s stock.

About Whirlpool Corporation

Whirlpool Corporation is a manufacturer and marketer of home appliances. The Company’s segments include North America; Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA); Latin America, and Asia. In North America, the Company markets and distributes home appliances and small domestic appliances under a range of brand names.

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