Equities Analysts Offer Predictions for Ball Co.’s FY2018 Earnings (BLL)

Ball Co. (NYSE:BLL) – Analysts at KeyCorp raised their FY2018 earnings per share (EPS) estimates for Ball in a research report issued to clients and investors on Sunday. KeyCorp analyst A. Josephson now forecasts that the industrial products company will post earnings per share of $2.26 for the year, up from their previous forecast of $1.92. KeyCorp has a “Sector Weight” rating on the stock.

Ball (NYSE:BLL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 7th. The industrial products company reported $0.60 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.52 by $0.08. The business had revenue of $2.75 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.64 billion. Ball had a return on equity of 19.20% and a net margin of 3.63%. The company’s revenue was up 8.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.44 EPS.

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently weighed in on BLL. JPMorgan Chase & Co. restated an “overweight” rating and issued a $48.00 price target (up previously from $47.00) on shares of Ball in a report on Thursday, February 8th. Zacks Investment Research cut Ball from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Monday, January 29th. Citigroup upgraded Ball from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $45.00 price target on the stock in a report on Wednesday, January 17th. BMO Capital Markets upgraded Ball from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $48.00 price target on the stock in a report on Monday, December 4th. Finally, TheStreet cut Ball from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a report on Thursday, December 14th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $45.21.

Ball (BLL) traded up $0.89 on Wednesday, hitting $39.01. The company had a trading volume of 1,215,568 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,792,332. The firm has a market cap of $13,218.10, a PE ratio of 34.76, a P/E/G ratio of 2.98 and a beta of 0.97. The company has a current ratio of 0.92, a quick ratio of 0.55 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.60. Ball has a 1-year low of $35.60 and a 1-year high of $43.24.

A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. New Mexico Educational Retirement Board boosted its holdings in shares of Ball by 4.0% during the fourth quarter. New Mexico Educational Retirement Board now owns 33,828 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $1,280,000 after purchasing an additional 1,300 shares during the last quarter. Chartwell Investment Partners LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Ball by 5.0% during the third quarter. Chartwell Investment Partners LLC now owns 30,939 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $1,277,000 after purchasing an additional 1,485 shares during the last quarter. Aperio Group LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Ball by 0.8% during the third quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 180,150 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $7,440,000 after purchasing an additional 1,492 shares during the last quarter. Benjamin F. Edwards & Company Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Ball by 63.0% during the fourth quarter. Benjamin F. Edwards & Company Inc. now owns 3,881 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $147,000 after purchasing an additional 1,500 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Ball by 9.8% during the fourth quarter. Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC now owns 16,968 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $642,000 after purchasing an additional 1,512 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 89.08% of the company’s stock.

In other Ball news, Chairman John A. Hayes sold 5,519 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, December 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $40.74, for a total transaction of $224,844.06. Following the sale, the chairman now owns 408,451 shares in the company, valued at approximately $16,640,293.74. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, VP Scott C. Morrison sold 2,591 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, January 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.62, for a total value of $100,064.42. Following the sale, the vice president now owns 390,052 shares in the company, valued at approximately $15,063,808.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders have sold 16,241 shares of company stock worth $638,091. 2.70% of the stock is owned by insiders.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 15th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, March 1st will be issued a dividend of $0.10 per share. This represents a $0.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.03%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, February 28th. Ball’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 35.71%.

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Ball Company Profile

Ball Corporation is a supplier of metal packaging to the beverage, food, personal care and household products industries. The Company’s packaging products are produced for a range of end uses and are manufactured in facilities around the world. Its segments include beverage packaging, North and Central America; beverage packaging, South America; beverage packaging, Europe; food and aerosol packaging; aerospace, and other.

Earnings History and Estimates for Ball (NYSE:BLL)

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