Sysco Corporation (NYSE:SYY) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Sysco reported fourth-quarter fiscal 2017 results, wherein both earnings and revenues exceeded expectations. Moreover, Sysco’s shares have been outperforming the industry over the last one year. Earnings rose 12.5% in the quarter. Growth in sales, expense management, and improved gross and operating margin led to the upside. The acquisition of London-based Brakes Group led to an increase of 5.7% of sales on a year-over-year basis. We note that the company’s sales have improved consistently driven by acquisitions and volume growth. Sysco’s efforts to boost sales and margins are paying up, as the company has delivered positive gross margins in the last nine quarters, after declining consistently since past several quarters. However, stiff competition remains a concern.”

Several other equities research analysts have also weighed in on the company. Wells Fargo & Company restated a “buy” rating on shares of Sysco Corporation in a research report on Monday. Pivotal Research set a $53.00 price target on Sysco Corporation and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Sunday. Royal Bank Of Canada set a $50.00 price target on Sysco Corporation and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, August 11th. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “hold” rating and set a $51.00 price target on shares of Sysco Corporation in a research report on Friday, August 4th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets set a $60.00 price target on Sysco Corporation and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 3rd. Ten research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the stock. Sysco Corporation currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $56.02.

Shares of Sysco Corporation (NYSE SYY) traded down 0.68% during trading on Wednesday, hitting $51.24. The stock had a trading volume of 1,753,954 shares. Sysco Corporation has a 52 week low of $47.15 and a 52 week high of $57.07. The stock has a market capitalization of $27.42 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 27.01 and a beta of 0.52. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $51.01 and a 200-day moving average price of $52.58.

Sysco Corporation (NYSE:SYY) last released its quarterly earnings results on Monday, August 14th. The company reported $0.72 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.71 by $0.01. Sysco Corporation had a return on equity of 52.09% and a net margin of 2.06%. The company had revenue of $14.40 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $14.35 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.64 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 5.5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Sysco Corporation will post $2.76 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other Sysco Corporation news, EVP Wayne Shurts sold 7,800 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $50.82, for a total value of $396,396.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 58,776 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,986,996.32. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CEO William J. Delaney III sold 30,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $49.92, for a total value of $1,497,600.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 406,725 shares in the company, valued at $20,303,712. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 122,400 shares of company stock worth $6,494,700 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 8.81% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in Sysco Corporation by 2,088.2% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 32,207,618 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,672,219,000 after buying an additional 30,735,711 shares during the period. Janus Henderson Group PLC boosted its position in Sysco Corporation by 9,055.0% in the second quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 5,707,603 shares of the company’s stock valued at $287,264,000 after buying an additional 5,645,259 shares in the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. boosted its position in Sysco Corporation by 47.6% in the second quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 5,054,930 shares of the company’s stock valued at $254,415,000 after buying an additional 1,629,990 shares in the last quarter. Capital World Investors boosted its position in Sysco Corporation by 11.7% in the second quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 13,767,000 shares of the company’s stock valued at $692,893,000 after buying an additional 1,445,000 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Nordea Investment Management AB boosted its position in Sysco Corporation by 252.7% in the second quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 1,928,089 shares of the company’s stock valued at $97,041,000 after buying an additional 1,381,441 shares in the last quarter. 78.49% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Sysco Corporation Company Profile

Sysco Corporation (Sysco) is a distributor of food and related products primarily to the foodservice or food-away-from-home industry. The Company’s segments include Broadline, SYGMA and Other. The Broadline segment includes its Broadline operations located in the Bahamas, Canada, Costa Rica, Ireland, Mexico and the United States.

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