Traders Purchase Large Volume of Call Options on Whirlpool (NYSE:WHR)

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Whirlpool Co. (NYSE:WHR) saw unusually large options trading activity on Tuesday. Stock investors bought 5,236 call options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 634% compared to the average daily volume of 713 call options.

Shares of WHR stock opened at $137.95 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.26, a quick ratio of 0.55 and a current ratio of 0.82. The firm has a market capitalization of $8.71 billion, a PE ratio of 9.10, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.88 and a beta of 1.63. Whirlpool has a 12 month low of $99.40 and a 12 month high of $180.00.

Whirlpool (NYSE:WHR) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Monday, January 28th. The company reported $4.75 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $4.30 by $0.45. The business had revenue of $5.66 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.76 billion. Whirlpool had a negative net margin of 0.87% and a positive return on equity of 27.24%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down .7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $4.10 earnings per share. Analysts anticipate that Whirlpool will post 14.66 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A number of research analysts recently issued reports on the stock. Royal Bank of Canada cut shares of Whirlpool from a “sector perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $134.60 price objective for the company. in a report on Wednesday, January 30th. Raymond James cut shares of Whirlpool from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a report on Wednesday, January 30th. Buckingham Research assumed coverage on shares of Whirlpool in a research note on Wednesday, January 23rd. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $135.00 price target on the stock. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Whirlpool from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, January 19th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and issued a $125.00 price target on shares of Whirlpool in a research note on Wednesday, November 28th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $146.40.

In other news, Director Michael F. Johnston sold 2,845 shares of Whirlpool stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $133.54, for a total transaction of $379,921.30. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 6,550 shares in the company, valued at approximately $874,687. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. 2.83% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in WHR. Murphy Pohlad Asset Management LLC bought a new stake in Whirlpool during the fourth quarter worth $26,000. Massey Quick Simon & CO. LLC bought a new stake in Whirlpool during the fourth quarter worth $32,000. WealthTrust Arizona LLC bought a new stake in Whirlpool during the fourth quarter worth $32,000. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group raised its position in Whirlpool by 79.7% during the third quarter. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group now owns 309 shares of the company’s stock worth $37,000 after acquiring an additional 137 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Doyle Wealth Management bought a new stake in Whirlpool during the fourth quarter worth $52,000. 96.98% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Whirlpool

Whirlpool Corporation manufactures and markets home appliances and related products. It operates through four segments: North America; Europe, Middle East and Africa; Latin America; and Asia. The company's principal products include laundry appliances, refrigerators and freezers, cooking appliances, dishwashers, mixers, and other small domestic appliances.

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