Stock traders buy large volume of put options on Marathon Petroleum (NYSE:MPC)

On Friday, Marathon Petroleum Co. (NYSE:MPC – Get Rating) was the target of unusual options trading activity. Investors bought 25,961 put options on the company. This is an 82% increase from the typical volume of 14,292 puts.

Insider activity

Separately, Vice Chairman Carl Kristopher Hagedorn sold 14,353 shares in a trade dated Thursday, August 25. The shares were sold at an average price of $105.41, for a total transaction of $1,512,949.73. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 7,873 shares of the company, valued at $829,892.93. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available on the SEC’s website. In addition, SVP Suzanne Gagle sold 35,174 shares in a transaction that took place on Monday, September 19. The stock was sold at an average price of $93.57, for a total transaction of $3,291,231.18. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 43,996 shares of the company, valued at approximately $4,116,705.72. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, accessible via this link. Additionally, Vice Chairman Carl Kristopher Hagedorn sold 14,353 shares of the company in a trade that took place on Thursday, August 25. The shares were sold at an average price of $105.41, for a total value of $1,512,949.73. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now directly owns 7,873 shares of the company, valued at $829,892.93. The disclosure of this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 0.28% of the company’s shares.

Institutional investors weigh in on Marathon Petroleum

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently increased or reduced their stakes in the company. Norges Bank bought a new position in shares of Marathon Petroleum in the fourth quarter worth $411,853,000. Renaissance Technologies LLC increased its equity stake in Marathon Petroleum to 50,346.4% in the second quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 2,824,999 shares of the oil and gas company valued at $232,243,000 after purchasing an additional 2,819,399 shares last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its holdings of Marathon Petroleum shares 21.9% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 12,481,878 shares of the oil and gas company valued at $1,067,202,000 after buying 2,244,421 additional shares last quarter. Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership increased its equity stake in Marathon Petroleum by 22,119.1% in the first quarter. Arrowstreet Capital Limited Partnership now owns 2,227,468 shares of the oil and gas company valued at $190,449,000 after purchasing an additional 2,217,443 shares last quarter. Finally, Invesco Ltd. increased its equity stake in Marathon Petroleum by 39.0% in the first quarter. Invesco Ltd. now owns 6,695,296 shares of the oil and gas company valued at $572,449,000 after purchasing an additional 1,878,976 shares last quarter. Institutional investors hold 78.69% of the company’s shares.

Changes to analyst ratings

A number of equity research analysts have commented on the company. Royal Bank of Canada raised its target price on Marathon Petroleum from $110.00 to $121.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a Wednesday, August 3, report. StockNews.com supported Marathon Petroleum’s coverage in a report released Wednesday. They set a “Strong Buy” rating on the stock. Barclays raised its price target on Marathon Petroleum from $112.00 to $126.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Monday. Wells Fargo & Company lowered its price target on Marathon Petroleum from $117.00 to $116.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a Wednesday, September 21 report. Finally, Piper Sandler raised her price target on Marathon Petroleum to $111.00 in a report on Thursday. Two analysts gave the stock a hold rating, eight gave the company a buy rating and two gave the company a strong buy rating. According to data from MarketBeat, Marathon Petroleum currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $118.23.

Performance of Marathon Petroleum shares

NYSE MPC shares traded at $4.92 at midday Friday, hitting $104.15. 153,259 shares of the company were traded, against an average volume of 5,067,899. The company has a debt ratio of 0.79, a current ratio of 1.49 and a quick ratio of 1.10. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $99.45 and its 200-day moving average price is $94.03. The company has a market capitalization of $51.93 billion, a P/E ratio of 7.37, a PEG ratio of 0.20 and a beta of 1.61. Marathon Petroleum has a 12-month low of $59.55 and a 12-month high of $114.35.

Marathon Petroleum (NYSE:MPC – Get Rating) last released quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, August 2. The oil and gas company reported earnings per share (EPS) of $10.61 for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $9.17 by $1.44. The company posted revenue of $54.33 billion in the quarter, versus a consensus estimate of $44.26 billion. Marathon Petroleum had a return on equity of 23.85% and a net margin of 5.09%. The company’s revenue increased 82.1% year over year. In the same period a year earlier, the company posted earnings per share of $0.67. Equity research analysts expect Marathon Petroleum to post EPS of 22.47 for the current year.

Marathon Petroleum Dividend Announcement

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, September 12. Investors of record on Wednesday August 17 received a dividend of $0.58 per share. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, August 16. This represents an annualized dividend of $2.32 and a yield of 2.23%. Marathon Petroleum’s payout ratio is 15.68%.

Marathon Petroleum Company Profile

(Get a rating)

Marathon Petroleum Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an integrated downstream energy company primarily in the United States. It operates in two segments, Refining & Marketing and Midstream. The Refining and Marketing segment refines crude oil and other raw materials at its refineries in the Gulf Coast, Mid-Continent and West Coast regions of the United States; and buys refined products and ethanol for resale.

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