Investment Management of Virginia LLC Decreases Stake in The Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR)

Investment Management of Virginia LLC reduced its holdings in The Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR) by 2.0% during the 2nd quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The institutional investor owned 42,247 shares of the company’s stock after selling 867 shares during the period. Investment Management of Virginia LLC’s holdings in The Kroger were worth $1,619,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Migdal Insurance & Financial Holdings Ltd. increased its position in shares of The Kroger by 30.2% during the first quarter. Migdal Insurance & Financial Holdings Ltd. now owns 1,229 shares of the company’s stock valued at $44,000 after acquiring an additional 285 shares during the last quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. grew its holdings in The Kroger by 48.1% during the 1st quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 879,618 shares of the company’s stock worth $31,657,000 after acquiring an additional 285,527 shares in the last quarter. IFM Investors Pty Ltd grew its holdings in The Kroger by 13.3% during the 1st quarter. IFM Investors Pty Ltd now owns 85,897 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,091,000 after acquiring an additional 10,096 shares in the last quarter. Total Clarity Wealth Management Inc. acquired a new position in The Kroger during the 1st quarter worth approximately $29,000. Finally, Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. grew its holdings in The Kroger by 134.7% during the 1st quarter. Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. now owns 21,195 shares of the company’s stock worth $763,000 after acquiring an additional 12,164 shares in the last quarter. 82.42% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

NYSE KR traded up $0.36 during trading hours on Wednesday, reaching $42.15. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 59,918 shares, compared to its average volume of 9,165,691. The stock has a market cap of $31.50 billion, a PE ratio of 28.05, a PEG ratio of 1.54 and a beta of 0.39. The Kroger Co. has a fifty-two week low of $30.35 and a fifty-two week high of $47.99. The company’s 50-day moving average is $42.67 and its two-hundred day moving average is $39.04. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.41, a quick ratio of 0.38 and a current ratio of 0.82.

The Kroger (NYSE:KR) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, September 9th. The company reported $0.80 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.64 by $0.16. The firm had revenue of $31.68 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $30.69 billion. The Kroger had a net margin of 0.87% and a return on equity of 28.26%. The firm’s revenue was up 3.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.73 EPS. Equities analysts expect that The Kroger Co. will post 3.28 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The Kroger announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback plan on Thursday, June 17th that permits the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization permits the company to reacquire up to 3.3% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 13th were issued a $0.21 dividend. This represents a $0.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.99%. This is a positive change from The Kroger’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.18. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, August 12th. The Kroger’s dividend payout ratio is 24.21%.

In other news, VP Carin L. Fike sold 1,145 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, July 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.30, for a total transaction of $43,853.50. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Mary Ellen Adcock sold 18,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, September 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $42.08, for a total transaction of $778,480.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 34,070 shares of company stock worth $1,392,265. 1.35% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several analysts have recently weighed in on KR shares. Credit Suisse Group boosted their price objective on shares of The Kroger from $36.00 to $40.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Monday. Wells Fargo & Company boosted their price objective on shares of The Kroger from $39.00 to $46.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 7th. BMO Capital Markets boosted their price objective on shares of The Kroger from $36.00 to $39.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Monday. Northcoast Research boosted their price objective on shares of The Kroger from $46.00 to $49.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 7th. Finally, Citigroup boosted their price objective on shares of The Kroger from $37.00 to $41.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, June 18th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have assigned a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $38.28.

The Kroger Company Profile

The Kroger Co engages in the operation of supermarkets and multi-department stores. Its brands include Big K, Check This Out…, Heritage Farm, Simple Truth, and Simple Truth Organic. The company was founded by Barney Kroger in 1883 and is headquartered in Cincinnati, OH.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for The Kroger (NYSE:KR)

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