MSA Safety (MSA) Rating Increased to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of MSA Safety (NYSE:MSA) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note published on Thursday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “MSA Safety Inc. is engaged in the development, manufacture and supply of safety products that protect people and facility infrastructures. The company’s core product lines include self-contained breathing apparatus, fixed gas and flame detection systems, handheld gas detection instruments, industrial and fire service head protection products and fall protection devices. It serves a broad range of industries, including the oil, gas and petrochemical industry, the fire service, construction, mining and general industry. MSA Safety Inc., formerly known as Mine Safety Appliances Company, is headquartered in Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania. “

MSA has been the topic of a number of other reports. ValuEngine cut MSA Safety from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Monday, April 1st. William Blair assumed coverage on MSA Safety in a research report on Thursday, January 10th. They issued a market perform rating and a $98.30 target price on the stock. Finally, Robert W. Baird restated a hold rating and issued a $105.00 target price on shares of MSA Safety in a research report on Friday, February 22nd. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. MSA Safety presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $106.10.

Shares of MSA Safety stock opened at $107.83 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.54, a quick ratio of 1.77 and a current ratio of 2.53. The company has a market cap of $4.15 billion, a PE ratio of 23.96 and a beta of 1.31. MSA Safety has a twelve month low of $85.32 and a twelve month high of $110.83.

MSA Safety (NYSE:MSA) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th. The industrial products company reported $1.14 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.11 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $326.00 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $340.46 million. MSA Safety had a return on equity of 27.89% and a net margin of 8.47%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up .0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.01 EPS. As a group, research analysts expect that MSA Safety will post 4.78 EPS for the current year.

In related news, Director L Edward Shaw, Jr. sold 50,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $104.02, for a total value of $5,201,000.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 467,238 shares in the company, valued at approximately $48,602,096.76. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, insider William M. Lambert sold 24,592 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, March 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $103.50, for a total value of $2,545,272.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 56,734 shares in the company, valued at $5,871,969. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 9.90% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Norges Bank bought a new position in MSA Safety during the 4th quarter valued at $38,442,000. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its stake in MSA Safety by 100.2% during the 3rd quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 624,073 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $66,426,000 after purchasing an additional 312,368 shares in the last quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC boosted its stake in MSA Safety by 22.7% during the 3rd quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 1,119,255 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $119,134,000 after purchasing an additional 206,920 shares in the last quarter. WINTON GROUP Ltd boosted its stake in MSA Safety by 1,560.2% during the 4th quarter. WINTON GROUP Ltd now owns 119,269 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $11,243,000 after purchasing an additional 112,085 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Handelsbanken Fonder AB boosted its stake in MSA Safety by 33.2% during the 4th quarter. Handelsbanken Fonder AB now owns 351,441 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $33,130,000 after purchasing an additional 87,541 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 73.64% of the company’s stock.

About MSA Safety

MSA Safety Incorporated develops, manufactures, and supplies safety products that protect people and facility infrastructures in the oil, gas, petrochemical, fire service, construction, utilities, and mining industries worldwide. It operates through Americas and International segments. The company's core product offerings include permanently installed fixed gas and flame detection instruments, such as permanently installed gas detection monitoring systems, and flame detectors and open-path infrared gas detectors, as well as replacement components and related services to detect the presence or absence of various gases in the air.

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