Wall Street brokerages predict that Kroger Company (The) (NYSE:KR) will post sales of $27.39 billion for the current quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Six analysts have issued estimates for Kroger Company (The)’s earnings, with the highest sales estimate coming in at $27.56 billion and the lowest estimate coming in at $27.19 billion. Kroger Company (The) posted sales of $26.57 billion during the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year over year growth rate of 3.1%. The business is scheduled to announce its next quarterly earnings report before the market opens on Friday, September 8th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Kroger Company (The) will report full-year sales of $27.39 billion for the current year, with estimates ranging from $120.40 billion to $122.24 billion. For the next year, analysts expect that the firm will report sales of $122.97 billion per share, with estimates ranging from $121.46 billion to $124.70 billion. Zacks’ sales calculations are a mean average based on a survey of analysts that cover Kroger Company (The).

Kroger Company (The) (NYSE:KR) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, June 15th. The company reported $0.58 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $0.58. Kroger Company (The) had a net margin of 1.35% and a return on equity of 29.10%. The company had revenue of $36.29 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $35.69 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.70 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 4.9% compared to the same quarter last year.

KR has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Kroger Company (The) in a research note on Friday, May 12th. BMO Capital Markets set a $32.00 target price on shares of Kroger Company (The) and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 18th. Morgan Stanley cut shares of Kroger Company (The) from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and reduced their target price for the company from $40.00 to $30.00 in a research note on Monday, June 19th. J P Morgan Chase & Co cut shares of Kroger Company (The) from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and reduced their target price for the company from $34.00 to $24.00 in a research note on Friday, June 16th. Finally, TheStreet cut shares of Kroger Company (The) from a “b” rating to a “c+” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 15th. Nineteen research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $30.51.

In other Kroger Company (The) news, insider J Michael Schlotman purchased 2,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, June 26th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $22.73 per share, with a total value of $45,460.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Michael Joseph Donnelly sold 17,600 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, May 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $30.01, for a total transaction of $528,176.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 249,208 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,478,732.08. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.87% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. BlackRock Inc. raised its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 3,334.2% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 72,026,662 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,124,067,000 after buying an additional 69,929,316 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 15.3% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 68,348,907 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,015,609,000 after buying an additional 9,054,273 shares during the last quarter. FMR LLC raised its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 54.1% in the first quarter. FMR LLC now owns 41,963,267 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,237,497,000 after buying an additional 14,723,540 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp raised its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 0.7% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 39,313,488 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,159,353,000 after buying an additional 288,686 shares during the last quarter. Finally, LSV Asset Management raised its stake in Kroger Company (The) by 0.7% in the first quarter. LSV Asset Management now owns 9,457,086 shares of the company’s stock valued at $278,889,000 after buying an additional 64,600 shares during the last quarter. 77.44% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of Kroger Company (NYSE KR) opened at 24.37 on Tuesday. Kroger Company has a 52-week low of $20.46 and a 52-week high of $36.44. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $23.58 and a 200 day moving average of $28.89. The firm has a market cap of $21.87 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 14.67 and a beta of 0.76.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, August 15th will be issued a $0.125 dividend. This represents a $0.50 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.05%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, August 11th. This is a positive change from Kroger Company (The)’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.12. Kroger Company (The)’s payout ratio is 28.92%.

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

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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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Earnings History and Estimates for Kroger Company (The) (NYSE:KR)

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