Principal Financial Group Inc. Raises Stake in Graco Inc. (NYSE:GGG)

Principal Financial Group Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Graco Inc. (NYSE:GGG) by 0.5% during the first quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The fund owned 744,300 shares of the industrial products company’s stock after buying an additional 4,001 shares during the quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc.’s holdings in Graco were worth $36,857,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. ETF Managers Group LLC lifted its holdings in Graco by 8.3% in the 1st quarter. ETF Managers Group LLC now owns 3,158 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $156,000 after acquiring an additional 242 shares during the last quarter. Eukles Asset Management increased its position in shares of Graco by 1.9% during the 1st quarter. Eukles Asset Management now owns 15,744 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $780,000 after purchasing an additional 287 shares during the last quarter. Stephens Inc. AR increased its position in shares of Graco by 6.6% during the 4th quarter. Stephens Inc. AR now owns 5,236 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $219,000 after purchasing an additional 322 shares during the last quarter. Brinker Capital Inc. increased its position in shares of Graco by 1.0% during the 4th quarter. Brinker Capital Inc. now owns 35,329 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $1,479,000 after purchasing an additional 358 shares during the last quarter. Finally, FMR LLC increased its position in shares of Graco by 8.0% during the 4th quarter. FMR LLC now owns 4,898 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $205,000 after purchasing an additional 362 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 83.61% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE GGG traded down $0.32 during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $49.88. 3,499 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 560,974. The company has a current ratio of 2.07, a quick ratio of 1.23 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.21. Graco Inc. has a 12 month low of $37.36 and a 12 month high of $53.91. The company has a market capitalization of $8.28 billion, a P/E ratio of 26.69, a P/E/G ratio of 2.16 and a beta of 1.00.

Graco (NYSE:GGG) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th. The industrial products company reported $0.47 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.49 by ($0.02). Graco had a return on equity of 41.51% and a net margin of 20.72%. The business had revenue of $404.90 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $415.70 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.48 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was down .3% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts predict that Graco Inc. will post 2 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In related news, insider Timothy R. White sold 6,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, May 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $52.18, for a total value of $313,080.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 50,660 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,643,438.80. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Dale D. Johnson sold 90,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.85, for a total value of $4,306,500.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 302,873 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $14,492,473.05. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 321,510 shares of company stock valued at $16,091,484 over the last 90 days. 4.23% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

GGG has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. DA Davidson reaffirmed a “neutral” rating on shares of Graco in a research report on Thursday, April 25th. Zacks Investment Research raised Graco from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, May 9th. Eight equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, Graco currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $47.00.

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About Graco

Graco, Inc is a manufacturing company, which designs, manufactures and markets systems and equipment used to move, measure, control, dispense and spray fluid and powder materials. It operates through the following segments: Industrial, Contractor and Process. The Industrial segment includes the Applied Fluid Technologies division, Industrial Products division and Process division.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Graco (NYSE:GGG)

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