Insider Activity Casts a Cloud Over Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC)

Despite closing 0.21 points higher on 06 December, Marathon Petroleum Corporation (NYSE:MPC) remains a key investment for many, but the stock is also a popular trading vehicle. Here’s how to trade it using charts and trading levels Friday. The shares accumulated 0.33 percent at $63.55 with a heavy trade volume of 7.49 million shares. After opening the session at $62.88, the shares went as high as $63.6341 and as low as $61.8, the range within which the stock’s price traded throughout the day. The firm is left with a market cap of $43.7 billion and now has 688.1 million shares outstanding. Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC) stock has lost -8.9 percent of market value in 21 trading days.

MPC stock has a trailing 3-year beta of 1.44, offering the possibility of a higher rate of return, but also posing more risk. The portion of a company’s profit allocated to each outstanding share of common stock was $5.01 a share in the trailing twelve months. The stock’s value has fallen -3.68 percent year to date (YTD) against a decline of -1.53 percent in 12 month’s time. The company’s shares still trade -28.15 percent away from its 1-year high of $88.45 and 4.8 percent up from 52-week low of $60.64. The average consensus rating on the company is 1.5, on a scale where 5 equates to a unanimous sell rating. In short, the mean analyst recommendations are calling this stock a buy.

Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC) will probably climb 60.5 percent over the next 12 months, according to price target estimates compiled by finviz. Meanwhile, they have set a $125-month high price target. This represents a whopping 96.7 percent increase from where shares are trading today. The 12-month median price target assigned by the analysts stands at $97.5, which represents a return potential of 53.42 percent when compared to the closing price of the stock of $63.55 on Thursday, December 06. The lowest price target for the stock is $87 — slightly more than 36.9 percent from MPC’s current share price.

History has shown that shares in Marathon Petroleum Corporation have gone up on 15 different earnings reaction days and are predicted to add 0.03 percent when the company reports upcoming earnings. Investors will get their next glimpse of MPC’s Q4 earnings on January 30. Analysts are forecasting revenue to climb 46.5 percent to $31.1B in the fiscal fourth quarter, while earnings are seen soaring by nearly 21.36 percent to $1.25 per share. It earned $1.62 per share, worse than the $1.7, adjusted, expected by Thomson Reuters consensus estimate. Revenue was $23.1B, worse than the $23.6B analysts expected. Earnings are estimated to increase by 70.3 percent this year, 45.31 percent next year and continue to increase by 39.63 percent annually for the next 5 years.

Let’s take a look at some insider activity at Marathon Petroleum Corporation (NYSE:MPC) and see the pattern. The earliest insider trade took place on 11/19/2018. Davis Steven A gathered a total of 2.5 thousand shares of company at average share price of $62.2. The total for the purchase was set at $155.5 thousand. After this transaction, the Director account balance stood at 27.46 thousand shares. The stock grew 2.17 percent since that insider purchase. On 05/30/2018, Kelley Thomas M., Sr. Vice President, Marketing, sold 24.82 thousand shares at a price per share of $79.47. This removed 1.97 million shares from the insider’s fortune and the stock saw a -20.03 percent retreat in value since the news became public. This transaction left 40.03 thousand shares in the Sr. Vice President, Marketing account.

On 03/13/2018, Sr. Vice President, Marketing Kelley Thomas M. performed a sale transaction worth $1.4 million. This sale at $69.77 each has eliminated 20 thousand shares from the insider’s portfolio position. Meanwhile, shares have recorded -8.92 percent decrease since the transaction was reported. The insider now is left with 40.03 thousand shares remaining in the account. Bunch Charles E, who performs the Director job, bought 1.5 thousand shares for $101.07 thousand. The acquisition occurred on 03/06/2018 was priced at $67.38 per share. The share price plunged -5.68 percent since the reporting date. Bunch Charles E now left with a stake of 12.85 thousand MPC stock worth $816.81 thousand after the insider buying.

The stock is currently hovering around the first support level of $62.36. Below this, the next support is placed in the zone of $61.16. Till the time, the MPC stock trades above this level, bulls have nothing to fear. On momentum oscillators front, ‘RSI’ has touched 37.81 on daily chart, which may remain a cause for comfort. If the price breaks below $61.16 level on closing basis, then we may see more profit booking and the stock may show further weakness. On the flipside, hitting the $64.19 mark may result into a pull-back move towards $64.82 level.

Shares of Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC) are trading at a P/E ratio of 33.08 times earnings reported for the past 12 months. The industry MPC operates in has an average P/E of 22.68. Its P/E ratio went as low as 6.37X and as high as 22.75 over the 5-year span.Further, it is sporting a 0.51 on the Price-to-Sales ratio. Compare this with the industry average P/S of 1.11. 10.6 percent is the gross profit margin for Marathon Petroleum Corporation and operating margin sits at 5.4 percent. Along with this, the net profit margin is 4.5 percent.