Short Interest in Conagra Brands, Inc. (NYSE:CAG) Expands By 28.3%

Conagra Brands, Inc. (NYSE:CAGGet Rating) was the recipient of a significant increase in short interest in March. As of March 31st, there was short interest totalling 16,370,000 shares, an increase of 28.3% from the March 15th total of 12,760,000 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 4,950,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 3.3 days. Currently, 3.4% of the shares of the stock are sold short.

In other Conagra Brands news, COO Darren Serrao sold 11,700 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, April 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $34.49, for a total value of $403,533.00. Following the sale, the chief operating officer now owns 111,978 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,862,121.22. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, COO Thomas M. Mcgough sold 40,802 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, January 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $35.96, for a total transaction of $1,467,239.92. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 2.10% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Russell Investments Group Ltd. boosted its stake in shares of Conagra Brands by 14.6% in the fourth quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 1,108,105 shares of the company’s stock valued at $37,822,000 after purchasing an additional 140,986 shares during the period. Kornitzer Capital Management Inc. KS boosted its stake in shares of Conagra Brands by 19.5% in the fourth quarter. Kornitzer Capital Management Inc. KS now owns 621,546 shares of the company’s stock valued at $21,226,000 after purchasing an additional 101,285 shares during the period. Nordea Investment Management AB boosted its stake in shares of Conagra Brands by 60.7% in the fourth quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 2,896,618 shares of the company’s stock valued at $98,094,000 after purchasing an additional 1,093,878 shares during the period. Avantax Advisory Services Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Conagra Brands by 23.1% in the fourth quarter. Avantax Advisory Services Inc. now owns 20,429 shares of the company’s stock valued at $698,000 after purchasing an additional 3,828 shares during the period. Finally, Townsend & Associates Inc boosted its stake in shares of Conagra Brands by 2.5% in the fourth quarter. Townsend & Associates Inc now owns 46,625 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,637,000 after purchasing an additional 1,144 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 83.79% of the company’s stock.

CAG traded down $0.27 during trading on Monday, hitting $35.39. 2,432,326 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 4,953,451. The company has a current ratio of 0.83, a quick ratio of 0.33 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.91. Conagra Brands has a 1 year low of $30.06 and a 1 year high of $39.09. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $33.88 and a 200 day moving average price of $33.52. The firm has a market cap of $16.98 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.57, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.17 and a beta of 0.77.

Conagra Brands (NYSE:CAGGet Rating) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 7th. The company reported $0.58 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $0.58. Conagra Brands had a net margin of 9.14% and a return on equity of 12.46%. The company had revenue of $2.91 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.84 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.59 earnings per share. Conagra Brands’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.1% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts forecast that Conagra Brands will post 2.35 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, June 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, April 29th will be paid a dividend of $0.3125 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, April 28th. This represents a $1.25 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.53%. Conagra Brands’s dividend payout ratio is currently 58.14%.

Several brokerages have issued reports on CAG. StockNews.com assumed coverage on shares of Conagra Brands in a report on Thursday, March 31st. They issued a “hold” rating on the stock. UBS Group assumed coverage on shares of Conagra Brands in a research report on Wednesday, March 30th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $34.00 price objective for the company. Consumer Edge lowered shares of Conagra Brands from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and set a $34.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, March 8th. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft cut their price objective on shares of Conagra Brands from $36.00 to $35.00 in a research report on Friday, January 7th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Conagra Brands from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $35.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Wednesday, March 30th. Thirteen investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat, the company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $36.46.

About Conagra Brands (Get Rating)

Conagra Brands, Inc engages in the manufacture and sale of processed and packaged foods. It operates through the following segments: Grocery and Snacks, Refrigerated and Frozen, International, and Foodservice. The Grocery and Snacks segment includes branded, shelf stable food products sold in various retail channels in the United States.

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