“We continue to view 2018 as a significant transition year for Kroger accompanied by heavy price investments, new merchandising resets, and a major pickup in M&A/divestiture activity. It should be noted, however, that earnings are set to take a significant step backwards in FY18. The three-year guidance will now require close to $600 million of operating income growth over the next two years in order to hit the $3.1 billion objective by the end of FY20.”,” Pivotal Research’s analyst commented.
Several other brokerages also recently weighed in on KR. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Kroger from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Friday, August 10th. Stephens set a $29.00 target price on Kroger and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Friday, September 7th. Credit Suisse Group set a $33.00 target price on Kroger and gave the company a hold rating in a research note on Friday, September 7th. Wells Fargo & Co lifted their target price on Kroger from $33.00 to $36.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a research note on Monday, September 10th. Finally, Telsey Advisory Group reaffirmed a market perform rating on shares of Kroger in a research note on Thursday, September 13th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Kroger has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $31.67.
Kroger (NYSE:KR) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, December 6th. The company reported $0.48 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.43 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $27.67 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $27.64 billion. Kroger had a return on equity of 26.64% and a net margin of 2.99%. The business’s revenue was down .3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.44 EPS. On average, research analysts forecast that Kroger will post 2.11 earnings per share for the current year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Saturday, December 1st. Investors of record on Thursday, November 15th were issued a $0.14 dividend. This represents a $0.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.92%. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, November 14th. Kroger’s payout ratio is 27.45%.
In related news, SVP Calvin J. Kaufman sold 10,500 shares of Kroger stock in a transaction on Thursday, October 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.47, for a total value of $288,435.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 124,688 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,425,179.36. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, insider Mary Ellen Adcock sold 1,850 shares of Kroger stock in a transaction on Monday, November 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $31.21, for a total value of $57,738.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 97,119 shares in the company, valued at $3,031,083.99. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 51,425 shares of company stock worth $1,480,298 over the last 90 days. Insiders own 1.07% of the company’s stock.
Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of KR. Landaas & Co. WI ADV purchased a new position in shares of Kroger during the second quarter valued at $100,000. Lee Financial Co purchased a new position in shares of Kroger during the third quarter valued at $101,000. CSat Investment Advisory L.P. purchased a new position in shares of Kroger during the second quarter valued at $109,000. Bridgeworth LLC purchased a new position in shares of Kroger during the second quarter valued at $109,000. Finally, Central Bank & Trust Co. grew its holdings in shares of Kroger by 290.6% during the third quarter. Central Bank & Trust Co. now owns 4,234 shares of the company’s stock valued at $123,000 after buying an additional 3,150 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 79.94% of the company’s stock.
Kroger Company Profile
The Kroger Co, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a retailer in the United States. It also manufactures and processes food products for sale in its supermarkets. The company operates supermarkets, multi-department stores, jewelry stores, and convenience stores. Its combination food and drug stores offer natural food and organic sections, pharmacies, general merchandise, pet centers, fresh seafood, and organic produce; multi-department stores provide general merchandise items, such as apparel, home fashion and furnishings, outdoor living, electronics, automotive products, toys, and fine jewelry; and price impact warehouse stores offer grocery, and health and beauty care items, as well as meat, dairy, baked goods, and fresh produce items.
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