Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Leggett & Platt (NYSE:LEG) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note published on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Leggett’s fourth quarter of 2018 earnings and revenues surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 8.8% and 2.2%, respectively. The positive performance was backed by advanced metal margins at its steel rod mill. Moreover, new programs and added content in Automotive, market share and content gains in Bedding, strength in Adjustable Bed, along with material price increase led to the upside. Aerospace and Work Furniture also added to the positives. Consequently, it provided upbeat full-year 2019 guidance. Meanwhile, Leggett’s shares have outperformed its industry in the past six months. Earnings estimates for 2019 have remained stable over the past 60 days. Although gross margin contracted 80 basis points (bps) due to higher raw material cost, adjusted EBIT margin grew 10 bps owing to better execution of initiatives that primarily focus on growth of strong businesses and the company’s exit from the struggling ones.”

A number of other equities analysts have also weighed in on the stock. Gabelli lowered shares of Leggett & Platt from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 6th. SunTrust Banks cut their price target on Leggett & Platt to $40.00 and set an outperform rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday, October 30th. TheStreet downgraded shares of Leggett & Platt from a b- rating to a c+ rating in a research note on Friday, October 26th. Finally, Raymond James cut Leggett & Platt from a strong-buy rating to an outperform rating and set a $44.00 price target for the company. in a report on Monday, October 29th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $45.80.

Shares of LEG opened at $43.45 on Thursday. The company has a quick ratio of 1.09, a current ratio of 1.87 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.01. The stock has a market capitalization of $5.67 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.45, a PEG ratio of 1.89 and a beta of 1.09. Leggett & Platt has a 12-month low of $33.48 and a 12-month high of $47.44.

Leggett & Platt (NYSE:LEG) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Monday, February 4th. The company reported $0.62 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.57 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $1.05 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.02 billion. Leggett & Platt had a net margin of 7.16% and a return on equity of 28.99%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 6.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.59 earnings per share. Equities research analysts anticipate that Leggett & Platt will post 2.53 EPS for the current year.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in LEG. FMR LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Leggett & Platt by 31.4% during the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 53,563 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,391,000 after purchasing an additional 12,796 shares during the last quarter. Millennium Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Leggett & Platt during the second quarter valued at $4,020,000. Advisors Asset Management Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Leggett & Platt by 919.3% during the second quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. now owns 96,020 shares of the company’s stock valued at $356,000 after purchasing an additional 86,600 shares during the last quarter. Jane Street Group LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Leggett & Platt during the second quarter valued at $674,000. Finally, Smith Shellnut Wilson LLC ADV purchased a new stake in shares of Leggett & Platt during the third quarter valued at $254,000. 78.11% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Leggett & Platt

Leggett & Platt, Incorporated designs and produces various engineered components and products worldwide. It operates through four segments: Residential Products, Furniture Products, Industrial Products, and Specialized Products. The Residential Products segment offers innersprings, wire forms, and machines to shape wire into various types of springs; industrial sewing/finishing machines, conveyor lines, mattress packaging, and glue-drying equipment, as well as quilting machines; and structural fabrics, carpet cushions, and geo components.

Featured Article: What are Institutional Investors?

Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on Leggett & Platt (LEG)

For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

Analyst Recommendations for Leggett & Platt (NYSE:LEG)

Receive News & Ratings for Leggett & Platt Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Leggett & Platt and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.