MSA Safety (MSA) Lifted to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

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Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of MSA Safety (NYSE:MSA) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note issued to investors on Friday.

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 research reports. Stifel Nicolaus reissued a buy rating and issued a $115.00 target price on shares of MSA Safety in a report on Wednesday, December 19th. ValuEngine raised MSA Safety from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Friday, December 21st. William Blair assumed coverage on MSA Safety in a research note on Thursday. They issued a market perform rating and a $98.30 price objective on the stock. Finally, Robert W. Baird downgraded MSA Safety from an outperform rating to a neutral rating and decreased their price objective for the stock from $107.00 to $98.00 in a research note on Friday, December 21st. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $100.83.

MSA stock opened at $97.96 on Friday. MSA Safety has a fifty-two week low of $71.47 and a fifty-two week high of $110.83. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.56, a quick ratio of 1.59 and a current ratio of 2.19. The stock has a market capitalization of $3.78 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.31 and a beta of 1.34.

MSA Safety (NYSE:MSA) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, October 24th. The industrial products company reported $1.16 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.05 by $0.11. MSA Safety had a return on equity of 28.12% and a net margin of 4.94%. The company had revenue of $331.10 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $325.53 million. On average, equities analysts predict that MSA Safety will post 4.53 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, insider Douglas K. Mcclaine sold 10,568 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $106.61, for a total value of $1,126,654.48. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 32,499 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,464,718.39. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, VP Steven C. Sr. Blanco sold 3,086 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, November 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $108.78, for a total value of $335,695.08. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 35,226 shares of company stock worth $3,755,082 in the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 9.90% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in MSA. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management purchased a new stake in shares of MSA Safety during the third quarter worth about $115,000. Parametrica Management Ltd purchased a new stake in shares of MSA Safety during the third quarter worth about $202,000. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC grew its position in shares of MSA Safety by 672.5% during the third quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 1,939 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $206,000 after purchasing an additional 1,688 shares in the last quarter. Emerald Advisers Inc. PA purchased a new stake in shares of MSA Safety during the third quarter worth about $400,000. Finally, Ramsey Quantitative Systems purchased a new stake in shares of MSA Safety during the third quarter worth about $410,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 71.84% 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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