Huntsman Target of Unusually High Options Trading (HUN)

Huntsman Co. (NYSE:HUN) was the recipient of some unusual options trading activity on Tuesday. Stock traders bought 4,689 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of 1,417% compared to the typical daily volume of 309 put options.

Several research firms have commented on HUN. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Huntsman from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, April 24th. Citigroup decreased their price objective on shares of Huntsman from $43.00 to $42.50 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, April 10th. UBS Group upped their price objective on shares of Huntsman from $41.00 to $42.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, May 29th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Huntsman from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $35.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Wednesday, April 25th. Finally, MED reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $40.00 price objective on shares of Huntsman in a report on Tuesday, May 1st. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $36.81.

Shares of Huntsman opened at $29.26 on Thursday, Marketbeat.com reports. The stock has a market capitalization of $7.18 billion, a PE ratio of 11.80, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.14 and a beta of 2.73. Huntsman has a 52-week low of $24.51 and a 52-week high of $36.09. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.61, a current ratio of 1.94 and a quick ratio of 1.58.

Huntsman (NYSE:HUN) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, May 1st. The basic materials company reported $0.96 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.77 by $0.19. The company had revenue of $2.30 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.17 billion. Huntsman had a net margin of 8.98% and a return on equity of 27.32%. Huntsman’s quarterly revenue was up 18.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.57 earnings per share. analysts anticipate that Huntsman will post 3.2 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 29th. Stockholders of record on Friday, June 15th will be given a $0.1625 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, June 14th. This represents a $0.65 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.22%. Huntsman’s payout ratio is presently 26.21%.

Huntsman announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback plan on Wednesday, May 23rd that allows the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the basic materials company to reacquire up to 13.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are usually an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

In other Huntsman news, VP J Kimo Esplin sold 16,106 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $32.69, for a total value of $526,505.14. Following the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 393,973 shares in the company, valued at $12,878,977.37. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. 10.90% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in shares of Huntsman by 16.8% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 13,634,802 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $398,821,000 after acquiring an additional 1,963,605 shares during the period. LSV Asset Management lifted its position in Huntsman by 3.9% during the first quarter. LSV Asset Management now owns 10,326,792 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $302,058,000 after purchasing an additional 387,069 shares during the period. Iridian Asset Management LLC CT lifted its position in Huntsman by 16.4% during the first quarter. Iridian Asset Management LLC CT now owns 7,178,631 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $209,975,000 after purchasing an additional 1,010,814 shares during the period. Millennium Management LLC lifted its position in Huntsman by 766.0% during the fourth quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 6,494,754 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $216,210,000 after purchasing an additional 5,744,820 shares during the period. Finally, Two Sigma Investments LP lifted its position in Huntsman by 254.8% during the fourth quarter. Two Sigma Investments LP now owns 3,534,199 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $117,653,000 after purchasing an additional 2,537,977 shares during the period. 79.08% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Huntsman

Huntsman Corporation, through its subsidiary, Huntsman International LLC, manufactures and sells differentiated organic chemical products worldwide. The company operates in four segments: Polyurethanes, Performance Products, Advanced Materials, and Textile Effects. The Polyurethanes segment offers polyurethane chemicals, including methyl diphenyl diisocyanate, polyols, thermoplastic polyurethane, propylene oxide, and methyl tertiary-butyl ether products.

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