Kroger Company (The) (KR) Short Interest Update

Kroger Company (The) (NYSE:KR) was the target of a large growth in short interest in August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 60,825,038 shares, a growth of 17.6% from the August 15th total of 51,718,973 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 14,528,568 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 4.2 days. Approximately 6.8% of the shares of the company are short sold.

In other Kroger Company (The) news, insider J Michael Schlotman acquired 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, June 26th. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $22.73 per share, with a total value of $45,460.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Corporate insiders own 0.87% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. IHT Wealth Management LLC boosted its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 122.1% in the 2nd quarter. IHT Wealth Management LLC now owns 2,770 shares of the company’s stock worth $376,000 after purchasing an additional 1,523 shares during the period. Advantage Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 15.8% in the 1st quarter. Advantage Investment Management LLC now owns 3,682 shares of the company’s stock worth $109,000 after purchasing an additional 502 shares during the period. YorkBridge Wealth Partners LLC boosted its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 4.1% in the 1st quarter. YorkBridge Wealth Partners LLC now owns 4,323 shares of the company’s stock worth $125,000 after purchasing an additional 171 shares during the period. Dupont Capital Management Corp acquired a new position in Kroger Company (The) in the 2nd quarter worth $105,000. Finally, Cedar Wealth Management LLC boosted its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 155.9% in the 2nd quarter. Cedar Wealth Management LLC now owns 4,990 shares of the company’s stock worth $116,000 after purchasing an additional 3,040 shares during the period. 75.52% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Shares of Kroger Company (NYSE KR) opened at 21.13 on Wednesday. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $22.65 and a 200-day moving average price of $26.28. The stock has a market cap of $18.87 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.78 and a beta of 0.79. Kroger Company has a 12-month low of $20.41 and a 12-month high of $36.44.

Kroger Company (The) (NYSE:KR) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, September 8th. The company reported $0.39 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.39. Kroger Company (The) had a net margin of 1.32% and a return on equity of 28.04%. The company had revenue of $27.60 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $27.48 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.47 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 3.9% on a year-over-year basis. Equities analysts anticipate that Kroger Company will post $1.97 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Kroger Company (The) declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock repurchase plan on Thursday, June 22nd that permits the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization permits the company to buy up to 4.9% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are often a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, November 15th will be issued a $0.125 dividend. This represents a $0.50 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.37%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, November 14th. Kroger Company (The)’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 30.30%.

A number of equities analysts have issued reports on KR shares. Loop Capital reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $32.00 price target on shares of Kroger Company (The) in a research note on Wednesday, May 24th. ValuEngine lowered Kroger Company (The) from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, June 2nd. BMO Capital Markets set a $32.00 price target on Kroger Company (The) and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, June 10th. Royal Bank of Canada reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $34.00 price target on shares of Kroger Company (The) in a research note on Tuesday, June 13th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $28.00 price target (down from $35.00) on shares of Kroger Company (The) in a research note on Monday, June 12th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have given a hold rating, eight have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $28.58.

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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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