General Mills, Inc. (NYSE:GIS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report released on Friday. The brokerage currently has a $62.00 target price on the stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price objective indicates a potential upside of 12.65% from the stock’s current price.

According to Zacks, “General Mills' consumer-focused innovation, marketing initiatives and robust restructuring savings are making up for the sluggish revenue growth. The company is currently pursuing several initiatives focused on improving operational efficiency to generate cost savings and support its key growth strategies. By fiscal 2018, the company expects to achieve cost savings through increased efficiency, reduced complexity through SKU optimization, further supply chain optimization and continued expansion of zero-based budgeting across the business, which will result in accelerated margin expansion. It is on track to achieve its cost savings target for fiscal 2018 as it forges ahead with its margin expansion efforts. However, General Mills' shares have underperformed the industry so far this year. Slowing organic volumes are overshadowing minor improvements in profit margins.”

Other analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. Vetr raised shares of General Mills from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $57.82 price objective for the company in a research report on Tuesday, June 27th. BidaskClub raised shares of General Mills from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 22nd. Morgan Stanley reissued an “equal weight” rating and set a $55.00 price target (down previously from $58.00) on shares of General Mills in a research report on Sunday, June 25th. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “hold” rating and set a $67.00 price target on shares of General Mills in a research report on Thursday, June 15th. Finally, Susquehanna Bancshares Inc set a $59.00 price target on shares of General Mills and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Sunday, June 25th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have assigned a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $59.11.

General Mills (GIS) opened at 55.29 on Friday. The company has a 50-day moving average of $55.72 and a 200-day moving average of $56.90. General Mills has a 52 week low of $52.76 and a 52 week high of $65.57. The stock has a market cap of $31.91 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.96 and a beta of 0.62.

General Mills (NYSE:GIS) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, June 28th. The company reported $0.73 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.71 by $0.02. General Mills had a net margin of 10.61% and a return on equity of 38.97%. The company had revenue of $3.81 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.75 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.66 earnings per share. General Mills’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.1% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that General Mills will post $3.11 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its stake in General Mills by 1.4% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 39,968,232 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,214,240,000 after purchasing an additional 533,919 shares during the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. lifted its stake in General Mills by 7.3% in the second quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 9,745,627 shares of the company’s stock valued at $539,908,000 after buying an additional 659,156 shares during the last quarter. Morgan Stanley lifted its stake in General Mills by 29.4% in the first quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 7,055,040 shares of the company’s stock valued at $416,318,000 after buying an additional 1,603,577 shares during the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its stake in General Mills by 26.1% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 7,013,411 shares of the company’s stock valued at $413,862,000 after buying an additional 1,449,632 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC lifted its stake in General Mills by 5.3% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 5,814,657 shares of the company’s stock valued at $342,642,000 after buying an additional 295,119 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 69.49% of the company’s stock.

General Mills Company Profile

General Mills, Inc is a manufacturer and marketer of branded consumer foods sold through retail stores. The Company is a supplier of branded and unbranded food products to the North American foodservice and commercial baking industries. The Company has three segments: U.S. Retail, International, and Convenience Stores and Foodservice.

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