Central Garden & Pet Company (NASDAQ:CENT) saw a significant decrease in short interest in May. As of May 31st, there was short interest totalling 489,128 shares, a decrease of 23.7% from the May 15th total of 641,376 shares. Currently, 4.8% of the company’s shares are sold short. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 247,992 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 2.0 days.

In other Central Garden & Pet Company news, Director John Ranelli sold 22,563 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, May 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $30.49, for a total transaction of $687,945.87. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 39,385 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,200,848.65. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, insider Michael A. Reed sold 15,107 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, May 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $33.21, for a total transaction of $501,703.47. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 142,558 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,734,351.18. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 82,382 shares of company stock valued at $2,613,603 over the last ninety days. Insiders own 11.60% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Central Garden & Pet Company by 65.7% in the first quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 4,140 shares of the company’s stock valued at $153,000 after buying an additional 1,641 shares during the last quarter. Sei Investments Co. raised its position in shares of Central Garden & Pet Company by 39.4% in the first quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 4,253 shares of the company’s stock valued at $158,000 after buying an additional 1,201 shares during the last quarter. Hartford Investment Management Co. purchased a new position in shares of Central Garden & Pet Company during the first quarter valued at about $204,000. Thrivent Financial For Lutherans purchased a new position in shares of Central Garden & Pet Company during the first quarter valued at about $212,000. Finally, Alliancebernstein L.P. purchased a new position in shares of Central Garden & Pet Company during the first quarter valued at about $222,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 21.28% of the company’s stock.

Central Garden & Pet Company (NASDAQ CENT) opened at 31.67 on Wednesday. The firm has a market cap of $1.63 billion, a P/E ratio of 26.13 and a beta of 0.21. Central Garden & Pet Company has a one year low of $19.01 and a one year high of $39.33. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $33.23 and a 200-day moving average price of $34.03.

Central Garden & Pet Company (NASDAQ:CENT) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 3rd. The company reported $0.67 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.64 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $570 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $572.37 million. Central Garden & Pet Company had a return on equity of 12.72% and a net margin of 3.27%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 5.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.65 earnings per share. Analysts predict that Central Garden & Pet Company will post $1.41 EPS for the current fiscal year.

CENT has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Central Garden & Pet Company from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, May 8th. Argus initiated coverage on shares of Central Garden & Pet Company in a research note on Wednesday, April 19th. They set a “buy” rating and a $44.00 price objective for the company. BidaskClub raised shares of Central Garden & Pet Company from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday. Finally, Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Central Garden & Pet Company in a report on Saturday, March 25th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $40.00.

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About Central Garden & Pet Company

Central Garden & Pet Company is a marketer and producer of branded products and distributor of third party products in the pet and lawn and garden supplies industries in the United States. The Company operates in two segments: Pet segment and the Garden segment. It is a marketer and producer of pet supplies in the United States.

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