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MKS Instruments, Inc. (NASDAQ:MKSI)’s stock price shot up 7.3% during trading on Thursday after the company announced a dividend. The stock traded as high as $163.06 and last traded at $162.85. 928,267 shares changed hands during trading, an increase of 85% from the average session volume of 502,053 shares. The stock had previously closed at $151.82.

The newly announced dividend which will be paid on Friday, March 5th. Investors of record on Monday, February 22nd will be issued a $0.20 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, February 19th. This represents a $0.80 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.48%. MKS Instruments’s dividend payout ratio is currently 17.70%.

Several brokerages recently weighed in on MKSI. Benchmark increased their price objective on shares of MKS Instruments from $146.00 to $150.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, October 29th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of MKS Instruments from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $198.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Wednesday, January 20th. Rosenblatt Securities increased their price objective on shares of MKS Instruments from $185.00 to $205.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, December 11th. Cowen increased their price objective on shares of MKS Instruments from $150.00 to $178.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, December 11th. Finally, KeyCorp increased their price objective on shares of MKS Instruments from $175.00 to $207.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Friday, January 29th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $181.80.

The company’s fifty day simple moving average is $164.64 and its two-hundred day simple moving average is $133.97. The company has a quick ratio of 3.23, a current ratio of 4.58 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.37. The company has a market capitalization of $9.23 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 33.42 and a beta of 1.60.

MKS Instruments (NASDAQ:MKSI) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 27th. The scientific and technical instruments company reported $2.34 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.02 by $0.32. MKS Instruments had a net margin of 12.78% and a return on equity of 16.49%. The business had revenue of $660.00 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $602.94 million. During the same period last year, the business posted $1.20 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 32.0% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that MKS Instruments, Inc. will post 7.09 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, Director Elizabeth Mora sold 450 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, December 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $139.54, for a total transaction of $62,793.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 15,051 shares in the company, valued at $2,100,216.54. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Company insiders own 1.10% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of MKSI. CI Investments Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of MKS Instruments during the third quarter worth $28,000. Vantage Consulting Group Inc bought a new position in MKS Instruments in the fourth quarter valued at $30,000. Exchange Traded Concepts LLC bought a new position in MKS Instruments in the fourth quarter valued at $33,000. Fieldpoint Private Securities LLC bought a new position in MKS Instruments in the fourth quarter valued at $39,000. Finally, Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC grew its position in MKS Instruments by 1,575.0% in the third quarter. Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC now owns 402 shares of the scientific and technical instruments company’s stock valued at $44,000 after purchasing an additional 378 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 94.02% of the company’s stock.

About MKS Instruments (NASDAQ:MKSI)

MKS Instruments, Inc provides instruments, systems, subsystems, and process control solutions that measure, monitor, deliver, analyze, power, and control critical parameters of manufacturing processes worldwide. Its Vacuum & Analysis segment offers pressure and vacuum control solutions, including direct and indirect pressure measurement; materials delivery solutions comprising flow and valve technologies, as well as integrated pressure measurement and control subsystems, which provide customers with precise control capabilities; power delivery products, such as microwave, power delivery systems, radio frequency matching networks, and metrology products used in providing energy to etching, stripping, and deposition processes; and plasma and reactive gas products.

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