International Flavors & Fragrances Shares Tumble 4.5% As Stifel Downgrades To Hold

By Ciara LinnaneMarketWatch Pulse

Shares of International Flavors & Fragrances fell 4.5% Monday, after Stifel downgraded the stock to hold from buy, and said headwinds such as foreign exchange rates are increasing. "We continue to view IFF favorably long-term, believing it is a highly cash generative business in a growing, high barrier to entry category, with mid-single digit sales growth remaining reasonable and complemented by M&A," analysts wrote in a note. "That said, near-term headwinds have increased, including worsening foreign exchange rates and slowing global consumer packaged goods volumes (CPG, aka IFF's customers), and coupled with consensus estimates being too high, is likely to result in IFF shares remaining range-bound." Stifel lowered its 2016 and 2017 EPS estimates to well below current consensus levels. It said the fact that the stock is below European peers Givaudan and Symrise , which have similar long-term fundamentals, may offer some downside protection. Shares have gained 0.2% in the last 12 months, while the S&P 500 has lost 7%.

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