Kroger Company (The) (NYSE:KR) issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday. The company reported $0.39 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.39, Bloomberg Earnings reports. Kroger Company (The) had a net margin of 1.35% and a return on equity of 29.10%. The company had revenue of $27.60 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $27.48 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.47 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 3.9% on a year-over-year basis. Kroger Company (The) updated its FY18 guidance to $2.00-2.05 EPS.
Kroger Company (NYSE:KR) traded down 7.51% on Friday, hitting $21.06. 62,444,244 shares of the stock were exchanged. Kroger Company has a 52 week low of $20.41 and a 52 week high of $36.44. The company has a market cap of $18.90 billion, a PE ratio of 12.68 and a beta of 0.79. The company’s 50-day moving average is $23.12 and its 200-day moving average is $26.90. Kroger Company (The) also was the recipient of some unusual options trading on Thursday. Stock investors acquired 31,730 put options on the company. This is an increase of approximately 607% compared to the typical daily volume of 4,485 put options.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 1st. Investors of record on Tuesday, August 15th were given a $0.125 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Friday, August 11th. This is a positive change from Kroger Company (The)’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.12. This represents a $0.50 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.37%. Kroger Company (The)’s payout ratio is currently 30.30%.
In related news, insider J Michael Schlotman bought 2,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, June 26th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $22.73 per share, with a total value of $45,460.00. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Susan M. Phillips sold 6,200 shares of Kroger Company (The) stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $21.17, for a total value of $131,254.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 124,105 shares in the company, valued at $2,627,302.85. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 0.85% of the company’s stock.
Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Intl Fcstone Inc. bought a new position in shares of Kroger Company (The) in the 2nd quarter worth about $645,000. Paradigm Financial Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of Kroger Company (The) in the 2nd quarter worth about $220,000. Sentry Investment Management LLC raised its position in shares of Kroger Company (The) by 114.9% in the 2nd quarter. Sentry Investment Management LLC now owns 72,943 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,701,000 after acquiring an additional 39,000 shares in the last quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank raised its position in shares of Kroger Company (The) by 26.9% in the 2nd quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 315,969 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,368,000 after acquiring an additional 66,919 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Archford Capital Strategies LLC raised its position in shares of Kroger Company (The) by 38,135.3% in the 2nd quarter. Archford Capital Strategies LLC now owns 13,000 shares of the company’s stock worth $139,000 after acquiring an additional 12,966 shares in the last quarter. 74.63% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Kroger Company (The) declared that its board has initiated a share buyback plan on Thursday, June 22nd that permits the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the company to purchase up to 4.9% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.
KR has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. Wells Fargo & Company restated a “buy” rating and set a $28.00 price objective (down previously from $35.00) on shares of Kroger Company (The) in a research report on Monday, June 12th. Royal Bank Of Canada reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $34.00 target price on shares of Kroger Company (The) in a report on Tuesday, June 13th. Argus reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Kroger Company (The) in a report on Monday, June 19th. Deutsche Bank AG set a $26.00 target price on shares of Kroger Company (The) and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, June 19th. Finally, Vetr cut shares of Kroger Company (The) from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $26.33 target price on the stock. in a report on Tuesday, July 4th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have issued a hold rating, eight have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. Kroger Company (The) has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $29.70.
About Kroger Company (The)
The Kroger Co (Kroger) manufactures and processes food for sale in its supermarkets. The Company operates supermarkets, multi-department stores, jewelry stores and convenience stores throughout the United States. As of January 28, 2017, it had operated approximately 4,000 owned or leased supermarkets, convenience stores, fine jewelry stores, distribution warehouses and food production plants through divisions, subsidiaries or affiliates.
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