Royal Bank of Canada Buys 75,530 Shares of Westlake Chemical Co. (WLK)

Royal Bank of Canada grew its stake in shares of Westlake Chemical Co. (NYSE:WLK) by 18.2% in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 489,915 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock after purchasing an additional 75,530 shares during the quarter. Royal Bank of Canada owned approximately 0.38% of Westlake Chemical worth $54,455,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other large investors also recently bought and sold shares of the company. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 7.5% in the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 1,555,400 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $165,696,000 after buying an additional 108,434 shares in the last quarter. Elkfork Partners LLC bought a new position in Westlake Chemical in the 4th quarter worth approximately $2,459,000. Macquarie Group Ltd. bought a new position in Westlake Chemical in the 4th quarter worth approximately $8,640,000. Teachers Advisors LLC grew its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 20.0% in the 4th quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 334,961 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $35,683,000 after buying an additional 55,899 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Sterling Capital Management LLC grew its holdings in Westlake Chemical by 114.6% in the 4th quarter. Sterling Capital Management LLC now owns 43,770 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $4,663,000 after buying an additional 23,370 shares in the last quarter. 29.70% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

In other news, Chairman James Chao sold 33,305 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $120.69, for a total transaction of $4,019,580.45. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now owns 51,492 shares in the company, valued at approximately $6,214,569.48. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Robert F. Buesinger sold 1,447 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $118.88, for a total value of $172,019.36. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 2,642 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $314,080.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 70,376 shares of company stock valued at $8,437,710 in the last quarter. Insiders own 72.00% of the company’s stock.



A number of equities analysts recently issued reports on WLK shares. Zacks Investment Research lowered Westlake Chemical from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, March 14th. BMO Capital Markets started coverage on Westlake Chemical in a report on Tuesday, March 27th. They issued a “market perform” rating and a $125.00 price objective for the company. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered Westlake Chemical from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $110.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Monday, April 9th. Royal Bank of Canada reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $130.00 price objective on shares of Westlake Chemical in a report on Tuesday, April 17th. Finally, Cowen increased their price objective on Westlake Chemical from $122.00 to $124.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, May 11th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating, nine have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $119.94.

Shares of NYSE WLK opened at $107.86 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.47, a current ratio of 1.79 and a quick ratio of 1.22. The firm has a market cap of $13.72 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.75, a PEG ratio of 0.96 and a beta of 1.55. Westlake Chemical Co. has a 1 year low of $61.51 and a 1 year high of $124.29.

Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 3rd. The specialty chemicals company reported $2.20 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.09 by $0.11. Westlake Chemical had a return on equity of 17.77% and a net margin of 17.61%. The firm had revenue of $2.15 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.14 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.06 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 10.7% on a year-over-year basis. equities research analysts forecast that Westlake Chemical Co. will post 9.02 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, June 13th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, May 30th were given a dividend of $0.21 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, May 29th. This represents a $0.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.78%. Westlake Chemical’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 15.36%.

About Westlake Chemical

Westlake Chemical Corporation manufactures and markets basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers, and building products primarily in North America and Europe. It operates through two segments, Olefins and Vinyls. The Olefins segment offers polyethylene, styrene monomers, and various ethylene co-products, as well as sells propylene, crude butadiene, pyrolysis gasoline, and hydrogen products.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Westlake Chemical (NYSE:WLK)

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