Westlake Chemical Co. (NYSE:WLK) announced a quarterly dividend on Friday, November 13th, Fidelity reports. Investors of record on Tuesday, November 24th will be given a dividend of 0.27 per share by the specialty chemicals company on Wednesday, December 9th. This represents a $1.08 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.47%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, November 23rd.
Westlake Chemical has raised its dividend by 37.7% over the last three years and has raised its dividend annually for the last 15 consecutive years. Westlake Chemical has a payout ratio of 56.3% meaning its dividend is sufficiently covered by earnings. Equities research analysts expect Westlake Chemical to earn $2.48 per share next year, which means the company should continue to be able to cover its $1.08 annual dividend with an expected future payout ratio of 43.5%.
WLK stock opened at $73.54 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $9.39 billion, a PE ratio of 24.35, a P/E/G ratio of 38.49 and a beta of 1.62. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.58, a quick ratio of 2.09 and a current ratio of 2.85. The firm’s fifty day moving average is $70.26 and its 200 day moving average is $58.83. Westlake Chemical has a one year low of $28.99 and a one year high of $81.08.
Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) last announced its earnings results on Sunday, November 8th. The specialty chemicals company reported $0.64 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.46 by $0.18. Westlake Chemical had a net margin of 5.14% and a return on equity of 4.74%. The business had revenue of $1.90 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.90 billion. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $1.22 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 8.1% compared to the same quarter last year. Research analysts predict that Westlake Chemical will post 1.74 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Several brokerages have recently issued reports on WLK. Bank of America lifted their target price on shares of Westlake Chemical from $45.00 to $50.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a research report on Thursday, September 10th. Scotiabank lowered shares of Westlake Chemical from a “sector perform” rating to a “sector underperform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 4th. UBS Group boosted their price target on shares of Westlake Chemical from $32.00 to $35.00 and gave the stock a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 6th. BMO Capital Markets boosted their price target on shares of Westlake Chemical from $74.00 to $76.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 4th. Finally, Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft boosted their price target on shares of Westlake Chemical from $65.00 to $82.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 4th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $61.25.
In other news, CEO Albert Chao sold 55,148 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $72.99, for a total value of $4,025,252.52. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 482,804 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $35,239,863.96. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CFO Mark Steven Bender sold 24,996 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, November 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $73.99, for a total transaction of $1,849,454.04. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 27,882 shares in the company, valued at $2,062,989.18. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 73.10% of the stock is owned by insiders.
About Westlake Chemical
Westlake Chemical Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, manufactures and markets basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers, and building products worldwide. It operates through two segments, Olefins and Vinyls. The Olefins segment offers polyethylene, styrene monomers, and various ethylene co-products, as well as sells propylene, crude butadiene, pyrolysis gasoline, and hydrogen products.
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