Hormel Foods (HRL) Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Hormel Foods (NYSE:HRL) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Friday.

According to Zacks, “In fourth-quarter fiscal 2017, Hormel Foods reported better-than-expected results, with adjusted earnings of 41 cents per share surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny. Revenues outpaced the consensus estimate by 4.1%. In the quarters ahead, the company is poised to grow on the back of its stronger demand for products such as SKIPPY SPAM and Justin's and synergistic benefits from acquired assets. It recently completed the acquisition of Columbus Manufacturing as well as increased its fiscal 2018 earnings per share and revenue guidance. Despite these positives, the company perceives that lower turkey prices will continue to hurt its Jennie-O Turkey Store business while lingering challenges in the Specialty Foods and Refrigerated Foods segments are concerning. In the last six months, the company's shares have underperformed the industry and also seem overvalued comparatively.”

A number of other brokerages have also issued reports on HRL. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $38.00 price objective on shares of Hormel Foods in a report on Monday, November 6th. Barclays set a $40.00 price target on shares of Hormel Foods and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday. Mizuho reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $33.00 price target on shares of Hormel Foods in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. Credit Suisse Group dropped coverage on shares of Hormel Foods in a research note on Saturday, August 26th. They issued an “outperform” rating for the company. Finally, KeyCorp started coverage on shares of Hormel Foods in a research note on Tuesday, October 31st. They set a “hold” rating for the company. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Hormel Foods presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $35.50.

Hormel Foods (NYSE HRL) traded down $0.01 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $36.44. 30,430 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 2,401,910. The company has a market capitalization of $19,240.00, a P/E ratio of 21.89, a P/E/G ratio of 2.24 and a beta of 0.59. Hormel Foods has a 12-month low of $29.75 and a 12-month high of $37.97. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.05, a current ratio of 1.91 and a quick ratio of 1.04.

Hormel Foods (NYSE:HRL) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, November 21st. The company reported $0.41 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $2.49 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.41 billion. Hormel Foods had a net margin of 9.24% and a return on equity of 17.87%. Hormel Foods’s quarterly revenue was down 5.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.45 earnings per share. sell-side analysts expect that Hormel Foods will post 1.65 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Hormel Foods news, insider Donald H. Kremin sold 100,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, September 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $31.66, for a total value of $3,166,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 887 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $28,082.42. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Dakota A. Pippins sold 4,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, September 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $31.60, for a total value of $126,400.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 92,377 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,919,113.20. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 232,430 shares of company stock worth $7,549,746 in the last 90 days. Insiders own 3.54% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Smith Shellnut Wilson LLC ADV boosted its position in shares of Hormel Foods by 88.3% in the third quarter. Smith Shellnut Wilson LLC ADV now owns 11,985 shares of the company’s stock worth $385,000 after buying an additional 5,621 shares during the period. Americafirst Capital Management LLC bought a new position in Hormel Foods during the 3rd quarter valued at $649,000. Belpointe Asset Management LLC bought a new position in Hormel Foods during the 3rd quarter valued at $383,000. IFM Investors Pty Ltd bought a new position in Hormel Foods during the 3rd quarter valued at $271,000. Finally, Independent Advisor Alliance boosted its stake in Hormel Foods by 12.4% during the 3rd quarter. Independent Advisor Alliance now owns 20,737 shares of the company’s stock valued at $648,000 after purchasing an additional 2,281 shares in the last quarter. 38.33% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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