Traders Buy Large Volume of Put Options on Albemarle (ALB)

Albemarle Co. (NYSE:ALB) was the target of unusually large options trading on Friday. Stock traders bought 12,680 put options on the company. This represents an increase of 1,460% compared to the typical daily volume of 813 put options.

Shares of Albemarle (NYSE:ALB) traded up 0.29% during trading on Friday, hitting $110.32. The stock had a trading volume of 897,049 shares. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $107.68 and a 200 day moving average of $96.36. The company has a market capitalization of $12.22 billion, a P/E ratio of 26.81 and a beta of 1.41. Albemarle has a 1-year low of $74.35 and a 1-year high of $112.88.

Albemarle (NYSE:ALB) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, May 3rd. The specialty chemicals company reported $1.05 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.95 by $0.10. The company had revenue of $722.06 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $678.74 million. Albemarle had a net margin of 6.92% and a return on equity of 14.38%. Equities research analysts predict that Albemarle will post $4.36 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 3rd. Stockholders of record on Thursday, June 15th will be issued a $0.32 dividend. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.16%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, June 13th. Albemarle’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 63.54%.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. GHP Investment Advisors Inc. increased its stake in Albemarle by 2.6% in the third quarter. GHP Investment Advisors Inc. now owns 6,991 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $598,000 after buying an additional 179 shares during the last quarter. Neville Rodie & Shaw Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Albemarle during the third quarter valued at $213,000. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management Co. Ltd. increased its stake in shares of Albemarle by 3.0% in the third quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management Co. Ltd. now owns 17,304 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $1,479,000 after buying an additional 509 shares in the last quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. increased its stake in shares of Albemarle by 5.8% in the third quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. now owns 345,337 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $29,523,000 after buying an additional 18,832 shares in the last quarter. Finally, World Asset Management Inc increased its stake in shares of Albemarle by 1.4% in the third quarter. World Asset Management Inc now owns 11,511 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock valued at $984,000 after buying an additional 159 shares in the last quarter. 86.50% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

ALB has been the topic of several research reports. Robert W. Baird upped their price objective on Albemarle to $125.00 in a report on Wednesday, March 1st. Zacks Investment Research raised Albemarle from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $119.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Tuesday, March 21st. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $120.00 price target (up previously from $105.00) on shares of Albemarle in a research note on Wednesday, March 1st. Aegis began coverage on Albemarle in a research note on Friday, February 17th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $108.00 price target on the stock. Finally, Instinet increased their price target on Albemarle from $102.00 to $118.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 1st. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, seven have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. Albemarle presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $117.20.

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Albemarle Company Profile

Albemarle Corporation is a global developer, manufacturer and marketer of highly-engineered specialty chemicals. The Company operates through three segments: Lithium and Advanced Materials, Bromine Specialties and Refining Solutions. Lithium and Advanced Materials segment consist of two product categories: Lithium and Performance Catalyst Solutions.

12 Month Chart for NYSE:ALB

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