Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST) – William Blair upped their Q1 2018 earnings per share estimates for shares of Fastenal in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday. William Blair analyst R. Merkel now expects that the company will earn $0.59 per share for the quarter, up from their prior estimate of $0.50. William Blair also issued estimates for Fastenal’s Q2 2018 earnings at $0.66 EPS, Q3 2018 earnings at $0.65 EPS and Q4 2018 earnings at $0.60 EPS.

Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, January 17th. The company reported $0.45 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.45. The company had revenue of $1.09 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.08 billion. Fastenal had a return on equity of 27.39% and a net margin of 13.18%. Fastenal’s revenue was up 14.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.40 EPS.

Several other research analysts also recently weighed in on FAST. Morgan Stanley reiterated an “equal weight” rating and issued a $46.00 price target (up from $44.00) on shares of Fastenal in a report on Monday, October 2nd. BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “market perform” rating and issued a $51.00 price target (up from $46.00) on shares of Fastenal in a report on Tuesday, October 10th. Stephens set a $54.00 price target on Fastenal and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 11th. KeyCorp reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $52.00 price target on shares of Fastenal in a report on Thursday, October 12th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus reissued a “hold” rating and set a $51.00 price objective on shares of Fastenal in a research note on Monday, December 11th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating, eight have issued a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $53.29.

Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST) opened at $53.75 on Friday. The company has a quick ratio of 2.45, a current ratio of 5.51 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.20. The firm has a market capitalization of $15,325.76, a price-to-earnings ratio of 26.74, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.77 and a beta of 1.09. Fastenal has a twelve month low of $39.79 and a twelve month high of $56.15.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in FAST. Janus Henderson Group PLC boosted its position in Fastenal by 357.0% during the 2nd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 1,822,655 shares of the company’s stock worth $79,340,000 after purchasing an additional 1,423,856 shares during the period. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. purchased a new stake in Fastenal during the 3rd quarter worth $64,702,000. Bank of New York Mellon Corp boosted its position in Fastenal by 8.7% during the 3rd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 16,219,944 shares of the company’s stock worth $739,306,000 after purchasing an additional 1,297,185 shares during the period. Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. boosted its position in Fastenal by 580.8% during the 3rd quarter. Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. now owns 1,496,666 shares of the company’s stock worth $68,218,000 after purchasing an additional 1,276,832 shares during the period. Finally, Neuberger Berman Group LLC purchased a new stake in Fastenal during the 3rd quarter worth $56,907,000. 84.57% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

In related news, insider James C. Jansen sold 10,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $48.50, for a total transaction of $485,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 22,588 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,095,518. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Gary A. Polipnick sold 2,634 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, December 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.45, for a total transaction of $140,787.30. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 59,323 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,170,814.35. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 62,746 shares of company stock valued at $3,061,819 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 0.55% of the company’s stock.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, February 27th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, January 31st will be paid a dividend of $0.37 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, January 30th. This is a boost from Fastenal’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.32. This represents a $1.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.75%. Fastenal’s payout ratio is currently 63.68%.

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Fastenal Company Profile

Fastenal Company is engaged in wholesale distribution of industrial and construction supplies. The Company is engaged in fastener distribution, and non-fastener maintenance and supply business. As of December 31, 2016, it distributed these supplies through a network of approximately 2,500 stores. Its customers are in the manufacturing and non-residential construction markets.

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