Buy, Sell or Hold? Market Update on 3M Company (NYSE:MMM)

Investors have the ability to track Wall Street analyst opinions in order to assist with stock research. Analysts often provide Buy, Sell, or Hold recommendations ratings for companies that they cover. Taking a look at shares 3M Company (NYSE:MMM), we can see that 4 have rated the stock a Strong Buy or Buy, based on data provided by Zacks Research. Checking on the average broker rating, we note that the current score is 2.75. This recommendation score uses a 1 to 5 scale where a score of 1 would indicate a Buy rating, and a score of 5 would indicate a Sell recommendation. 

Individual investors often strive to create a solid strategy before trying to take on the market. Setting up realistic, attainable goals, may be a good place for the amateur to start. There are many different approaches that the investor can take when getting into the stock market. Some investors will try to follow strategies that have worked for others in the past. Sometimes this will work, and sometimes it will not. Markets and economic landscapes are constantly changing. A strategy that worked yesterday may not work again tomorrow. Investors who put in the time to do the necessary homework may find themselves much better off when the market decides to rear its ugly head at some point down the road.  

Individual investors might be looking at all the angles in order to concoct a winning plan for the next few quarters. The diligent investor is typically on the ball and ready to encounter any unforeseen market movements. Monitoring recent stock price activity on shares of 3M Company (NYSE:MMM) we have noted that the stock price has been trading near $207.92. Turning the focus to some historical price information, we note that the stock has moved -2.27% over the previous 12 weeks. Since the start of the year, we note that shares have seen a change of -11.66%. Over the last 4 weeks, shares have seen a change of 8.17%. Over the last 5 sessions, the stock has moved 4.65%. After a recent scan, we can see that the 52-week high is currently $258.63, and the 52-week low is presently $184.54.

Following shares of 3M Company (NYSE:MMM), we can see that the average consensus target price based on contributing analysts is currently $211.67. Wall Street analysts often provide price target projections on where they believe the stock will be headed in the future. Because price target projections are essentially the opinions of covering analysts, they have the ability to vary widely from one analyst to another. Navigating the equity markets can seem daunting at times. Finding ways to identify the important data can make a big difference in sustaining profits into the future. As we move closer to the end of the year, investors will be watching to see which way the momentum shifts and if stocks are still primed to go higher. Investors might choose to rely heavily on analyst research and corresponding target predictions, or they may choose to use them as a guide to supplement their own research.

Zooming in on the current quarter EPS consensus estimate for 3M Company (NYSE:MMM), we see that the current number is 2.28. This EPS estimate is using 12 Wall Street analysts polled by Zacks Research. Last quarter, the company stated a quarterly EPS of 2.58. Sell-side analysts have the task of examining companies and providing estimates relating to future results. These estimates carry a lot of weight on the Street, and earnings hits or misses revolve around these numbers. Sometimes these predictions are very close to the actual reported number, and other times they are not. Many investors will be closely watching which way analyst estimates are being adjusted right before earnings. This may provide some insight on how good or bad the numbers for the quarter are likely to be. Investors might want to take a look at their holdings after the earnings reports to make sure that nothing extremely out of the ordinary after combing through the results.

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