Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (MMLP) Shares Slip, Investors Watching Closely, Here is Why

Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (NASDAQ: MMLP) shares rose on Thursday December 29 with lower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a downgraded rating.

Meanwhile, U.S. stocks were little changed in early trade Thursday. The S&P 500 SPX, +0.04% rose 0.1% to 2,252, while the Dow DJIA, +0.04% advanced 16 points to 19,850. The Nasdaq Composite COMP, -0.04% was virtually flat at 5,439.

Shares of Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (NASDAQ: MMLP) were downgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research in a note to their investors today. The company currently has a rating of Sell on the shares. The one-year price target of $21.40 is above the opening price of $17.00, resulting a number of other analysts to report on the stock recently. Looking back over the last 52 weeks, Martin Midstream Partners L.P. stock has a high of $25.38. Important and integral changes in the company’s operations, future outlook or industry can cause downgrades as the analysts feel that the future prospects for the security have dropped from the initial recommendation.

Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (NASDAQ: MMLP) shares last traded at $17.30, which represents a jump of $0.25 or 1.47% over the previous closing price. Opening at $17.00, they fluctuated from $16.95 and $17.30 throughout the day.

Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (NASDAQ: MMLP) now has a market cap of 613.37B.

Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (NASDAQ: MMLP) Average Daily Trading Volume

17,592 shares traded hands yesterday, lower than normal, out of a total float 28,913,000. Swing traders often use increases in trading volume to identify large volume aggregation or circulation by institutional investors, so trading volume is likely to increase in the next few days.

As with all potential breakouts, investors watch for volume to be at least 40%-50% above normal on the breakout to show that fund managers and other professional investors are jumping in.

Institutional sponsorship just refers to ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

These professional investors retain substantial teams of analysts that research thousands of stocks. Thus, watching their interests is a good way to ensure you are buying the right stocks.

Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (NASDAQ: MMLP) Moving Averages

A moving average can also act as support or resistance. In an uptrend a 50-day, 100-day or 200-day moving average may act as a support level, as shown in the figure below.

This is because the average acts like a floor (support), so the price bounces up off of it.

In a downtrend a moving average may act as resistance; like a ceiling, the price hits it and then starts to drop again.

Traders can make smarter trades when they follow the activity of professional investors.

With that in mind, Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (NASDAQ: MMLP) now has a 50-day MA of $17.31 and 200-day MA of $20.22. It has traded in a 52-week range between $13.27 – 25.38 and today’s last price is 31.84%% lower than the 52 week high of $25.38.

Earnings growth is a critical factor to consider when buying stocks and investors look for companies that have raised their earnings at least 25% or more for 3 consecutive years.

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