Aperio Group LLC Increases Position in Agrium Inc. (AGU)

Aperio Group LLC raised its stake in shares of Agrium Inc. (NYSE:AGU) (TSE:AGU) by 18.5% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 51,975 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after buying an additional 8,118 shares during the period. Aperio Group LLC’s holdings in Agrium were worth $4,703,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the stock. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC raised its position in Agrium by 138.8% in the first quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 1,564 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $150,000 after buying an additional 909 shares during the period. V Wealth Management LLC acquired a new position in Agrium during the second quarter valued at $156,000. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. raised its position in Agrium by 4.8% in the first quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 2,247 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $212,000 after buying an additional 103 shares during the period. M&T Bank Corp acquired a new position in Agrium during the first quarter valued at $234,000. Finally, Creative Planning raised its position in Agrium by 6.1% in the first quarter. Creative Planning now owns 2,746 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $262,000 after buying an additional 159 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 68.42% of the company’s stock.

Agrium Inc. (NYSE AGU) opened at 97.19 on Friday. Agrium Inc. has a one year low of $87.78 and a one year high of $111.88. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $97.67 and its 200-day moving average price is $95.77. The company has a market capitalization of $13.43 billion, a PE ratio of 23.45 and a beta of 0.62.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, October 19th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 29th will be given a $0.875 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 28th. This represents a $3.50 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.60%. Agrium’s dividend payout ratio is presently 84.34%.

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A number of analysts have commented on AGU shares. Royal Bank Of Canada reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $110.00 price objective on shares of Agrium in a research note on Thursday, June 29th. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $107.00 price objective (down from $114.00) on shares of Agrium in a research note on Monday, July 10th. Vertical Research raised shares of Agrium from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, May 19th. Cowen and Company set a $99.00 price objective on shares of Agrium and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 28th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $91.00 price objective on shares of Agrium in a research note on Friday, April 21st. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $104.31.

About Agrium

Agrium Inc is a retailer of agricultural products and services in the United States, Canada, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Uruguay and a multi-national producer and wholesale marketer of nutrients for agricultural and industrial markets. The Company’s segments include Retail and Wholesale. As of December 31, 2016, its Retail business unit marketed crop nutrients, crop protection products, seed, merchandise, application and other agronomic services through 1,500 retail locations in the United States, Canada, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Uruguay.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Agrium (NYSE:AGU)

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