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Ashland to Hike Price of Composites Products in North America

Zacks Equity Research

Ashland Global Holdings Inc. ASH is set to hike the price of composites products portfolio in North America, including the United States, Mexico and Canada. The hiked rates will be effective from Apr 22, 2019 or as contracts permit.

Per the company, ortho-phthalic resins prices will rise by 6 cents per pound and all other unsaturated polyester resins will rise by 4 cents per pound. Prices of vinyl ester, fire retardant & specialty resins will rise by 5 cents per pound. Chlorendic based resins prices will rise by 9 cents per pound and all gelcoats & pigments prices will rise by 5 cents per pound.

Moreover, Ashland stated that the hike is mainly driven by persistent increase in cost of key raw materials, freight and tariffs (particularly for Chlorendic based resins). The company’s latest price hike is intended to provide customer services with the highest quality and performance.  

Shares of Ashland have gained 14.1% in a year’s time compared with the industry’s 7.5% rise.


Ashland expects adjusted earnings per share (EPS) in the range of $3.10-$3.40 for fiscal 2019.  

Adjusted EBITDA in the Specialty Ingredients unit is projected in the range $610-$635 million. In the Intermediates & Solvents business, adjusted EBITDA is projected in the band of $20-$30 million. Free cash flow for fiscal 2019 is expected around $175 million.

For second-quarter fiscal 2019, the company projects adjusted EPS from continuing operations in the range of 80-90 cents per share, assuming that effective tax rate is 15%.

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Ashland currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the basic materials space are Kirkland Lake Gold Ltd. KL, Rio Tinto plc RIO and Materion Corporation MTRN, each currently sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Kirkland has an expected earnings growth rate of 8.8% for 2019. The company’s shares have surged 83.1% in the past year.

Rio Tinto has an expected earnings growth rate of 20.1% for the current year. The company’s shares have gained 17.4% in a year’s time.

Materion has an expected earnings growth rate of 12.6% for 2019. Its shares have gained 11.4% in a year’s time.

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