Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Lincoln Electric (NASDAQ:LECO) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report released on Wednesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Lincoln Electric stands to gain from its improving end markets. Focus on commercializing innovative products, relatively stable pricing environment and cost-cutting initiatives will drive growth. It will also benefit from consistent investment in welding automation. Further, the acquisition of Air Liquide will enhance 2020 Vision and Strategy and enables Lincoln to build its global footprint. It will also be accretive to earnings. The company has a positive record of earnings surprises. The stock has outperformed the industry, over the past three months. Raw material inflation will impact margins in fourth-quarter 2017 as well as in 2018. A stronger U.S. dollar will continue to affect the company’s exports. “

LECO has been the subject of a number of other research reports. KeyCorp restated a hold rating on shares of Lincoln Electric in a report on Friday, October 20th. Oppenheimer restated a hold rating on shares of Lincoln Electric in a report on Tuesday, December 12th. Royal Bank of Canada restated a hold rating on shares of Lincoln Electric in a report on Monday, October 30th. Robert W. Baird restated a hold rating and issued a $92.00 price objective on shares of Lincoln Electric in a report on Friday, October 13th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus upgraded shares of Lincoln Electric from a hold rating to a buy rating and lifted their price objective for the company from $97.00 to $116.00 in a report on Tuesday, January 16th. Eight analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Lincoln Electric presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $103.38.

Lincoln Electric (NASDAQ:LECO) opened at $86.82 on Wednesday. The company has a quick ratio of 1.83, a current ratio of 2.55 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.75. The firm has a market cap of $5,708.94, a P/E ratio of 24.18, a P/E/G ratio of 1.70 and a beta of 1.04. Lincoln Electric has a twelve month low of $81.39 and a twelve month high of $101.34.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. FMR LLC acquired a new position in Lincoln Electric during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $23,713,000. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company grew its holdings in Lincoln Electric by 1.9% during the 2nd quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 91,019 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $8,381,000 after acquiring an additional 1,739 shares in the last quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. acquired a new position in Lincoln Electric during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $483,000. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. grew its holdings in Lincoln Electric by 47.2% during the 3rd quarter. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. now owns 5,018 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $460,000 after acquiring an additional 1,609 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. grew its holdings in Lincoln Electric by 1,285.3% during the 3rd quarter. Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. now owns 301,350 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $27,627,000 after acquiring an additional 279,596 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 64.12% of the company’s stock.

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Lincoln Electric Company Profile

Lincoln Electric Holdings, Inc is a manufacturer of welding, cutting and brazing products. The Company operates through three segments: Americas Welding, International Welding and The Harris Products Group. The Americas Welding segment includes welding operations in North and South America. The International Welding segment primarily includes welding operations in Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia.

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