3M Stock Surges – Will the Momentum Persist?

Despite today's 2.7% jump to $100.86, 3M may soon be running into resistance as it is now within range of its average analyst target price of $106.15. With an average rating of hold, and analysts assigning target prices from 87.0 to 140.0 dollars per share, investors will be asking themselves if the Medical Instruments & Supplies stock can sustain this bullish run.

It seems the market sentiment regarding 3M is mostly optimistic, since it has a short interest of only 1.7%. This is the percentage of the share float that is being shorted by investors who are hoping the stock's price will decrease in the future.

When a stock is sold short, it means an investor has borrowed shares of the stock from their broker, and then sold them at the going market price. The investor hopes for the price to decline, so that they might buy those shares back at a lower price in the future. Once they do, they can return the borrowed shares to their broker, and keep the profit they made on the transaction.

Another way to gauge the sentiment on 3M is to look at the percentage of institutions that are invested in the stock. In this case, 66.8% of the shares are held by pension, mutual, and hedge funds, which shows that these institutions probably have strong confidence in the stock.

If institutions are invested in a particular stock, it shows in most cases that they have performed quality research and concluded that it is a good investment. In some cases, however, increases in institutional ownership could be a sign of a takeover attempt or proxy fight, which can actually injure share prices. Also, institutions are not infallible, and can certainly make miscalculations -- often with spectacular results.

In conclusion, we see mixed market sentiment regarding 3M because of an analyst consensus of some upside potential, a hold rating, a very low short interest, and an average number of institutional investors. At Market Inference, we believe that any investment decision should be preceded by an in-depth analysis of the company's fundamental values and a comparison with similar stocks.

Here's a snapshot of some important facts to keep in mind about MMM:

  • The stock has trailing 12 month earnings per share (EPS) of $-12.73

  • 3M has a trailing 12 month Price to Earnings (P/E) ratio of -7.9 compared to the S&P 500 average of 27.65

  • The company has a Price to Book (P/B) ratio of 11.47 in contrast to the S&P 500's average ratio of 4.59

  • 3M is a Health Care company, and the sector average P/E and P/B ratios are 27.53 and 3.61 respectively

The above analysis is intended for educational purposes only and was performed on the basis of publicly available data. It is not to be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell any security. Any buy, sell, or other recommendations mentioned in the article are direct quotations of consensus recommendations from the analysts covering the stock, and do not represent the opinions of Market Inference or its writers. Past performance, accounting data, and inferences about market position and corporate valuation are not reliable indicators of future price movements. Market Inference does not provide financial advice. Investors should conduct their own review and analysis of any company of interest before making an investment decision.