Morgan Stanley Raises Clorox (NYSE:CLX) Price Target to $193.00

Clorox (NYSE:CLX) had its price objective lifted by Morgan Stanley from $177.00 to $193.00 in a report released on Friday morning, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. They currently have an underweight rating on the stock.

A number of other equities research analysts also recently weighed in on CLX. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded Clorox from an underweight rating to an overweight rating and upped their target price for the stock from $153.00 to $185.00 in a research report on Monday, March 16th. DA Davidson assumed coverage on Clorox in a report on Monday, June 29th. They issued a buy rating on the stock. UBS Group upped their price target on Clorox from $155.00 to $168.00 and gave the company a sell rating in a report on Monday, May 4th. Credit Suisse Group upped their price target on Clorox from $180.00 to $185.00 and gave the company a neutral rating in a report on Wednesday, June 3rd. Finally, Barclays reaffirmed a sell rating and issued a $164.00 price target on shares of Clorox in a report on Tuesday, May 5th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the stock. Clorox has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $174.85.

Shares of NYSE CLX opened at $229.76 on Friday. The company has a current ratio of 0.98, a quick ratio of 0.72 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 3.69. The stock has a 50 day simple moving average of $209.96 and a 200-day simple moving average of $182.19. The company has a market cap of $28.93 billion, a PE ratio of 33.69, a P/E/G ratio of 5.49 and a beta of 0.27. Clorox has a 12-month low of $144.12 and a 12-month high of $230.53.

Clorox (NYSE:CLX) last released its earnings results on Friday, May 1st. The company reported $1.89 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.72 by $0.17. The firm had revenue of $1.78 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.69 billion. Clorox had a return on equity of 147.52% and a net margin of 13.67%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 15.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.44 earnings per share. Sell-side analysts forecast that Clorox will post 6.91 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, August 14th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, July 29th will be paid a dividend of $1.11 per share. This is an increase from Clorox’s previous quarterly dividend of $1.06. This represents a $4.44 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.93%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, July 28th. Clorox’s payout ratio is 67.09%.

In other news, SVP Diego J. Barral sold 11,031 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $203.60, for a total value of $2,245,911.60. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 20,037 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,079,533.20. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CAO Jeff Baker sold 5,158 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, May 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $203.74, for a total transaction of $1,050,890.92. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 7,963 shares in the company, valued at $1,622,381.62. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 73,011 shares of company stock worth $14,788,606. Company insiders own 1.14% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of CLX. Marshall Wace North America L.P. acquired a new position in shares of Clorox in the first quarter worth $65,000. Orser Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in Clorox by 6.0% in the fourth quarter. Orser Capital Management LLC now owns 12,010 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,836,000 after purchasing an additional 675 shares in the last quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. boosted its holdings in Clorox by 46.0% in the fourth quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 128,834 shares of the company’s stock worth $19,779,000 after purchasing an additional 40,595 shares in the last quarter. BRITISH COLUMBIA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Corp boosted its holdings in Clorox by 2.0% in the fourth quarter. BRITISH COLUMBIA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Corp now owns 29,630 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,549,000 after purchasing an additional 579 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans boosted its holdings in Clorox by 17.3% in the fourth quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans now owns 6,771 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,040,000 after purchasing an additional 997 shares in the last quarter. 78.75% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Clorox Company Profile

The Clorox Company manufactures and markets consumer and professional products worldwide. It operates through four segments: Cleaning, Household, Lifestyle, and International. The company offers laundry additives, including bleach products under the Clorox brand, as well as Clorox 2 stain fighter and color booster; home care products primarily under the Clorox, Formula 409, Liquid-Plumr, Pine-Sol, S.O.S, and Tilex brands; naturally derived products under the Green Works brand; and professional cleaning, disinfecting, and food service products under the Clorox, Dispatch, HealthLink, Clorox Healthcare, Hidden Valley, KC Masterpiece, and Soy Vay brands.

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Analyst Recommendations for Clorox (NYSE:CLX)

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