Hennion & Walsh Asset Management Inc. Trims Stock Holdings in The Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR)

Hennion & Walsh Asset Management Inc. lowered its stake in shares of The Kroger Co. (NYSE:KRFree Report) by 61.2% during the 1st quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 6,775 shares of the company’s stock after selling 10,703 shares during the period. Hennion & Walsh Asset Management Inc.’s holdings in Kroger were worth $387,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other large investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Ameriprise Financial Inc. lifted its position in Kroger by 2.0% in the 3rd quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 2,619,742 shares of the company’s stock worth $117,246,000 after buying an additional 50,177 shares during the last quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Kroger by 10.1% in the 3rd quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. now owns 7,423 shares of the company’s stock valued at $332,000 after purchasing an additional 678 shares in the last quarter. Sei Investments Co. grew its holdings in shares of Kroger by 10.9% during the 3rd quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 585,483 shares of the company’s stock valued at $26,201,000 after purchasing an additional 57,595 shares during the last quarter. Royal London Asset Management Ltd. raised its position in Kroger by 4.3% in the 3rd quarter. Royal London Asset Management Ltd. now owns 284,094 shares of the company’s stock worth $12,715,000 after purchasing an additional 11,707 shares during the period. Finally, Alethea Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in Kroger in the third quarter worth $445,000. 80.93% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

Several research firms recently issued reports on KR. Guggenheim raised their price target on Kroger from $60.00 to $61.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, March 19th. StockNews.com upgraded shares of Kroger from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a report on Tuesday. BMO Capital Markets upgraded shares of Kroger from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and upped their price target for the company from $58.00 to $60.00 in a report on Tuesday, June 18th. Wells Fargo & Company raised shares of Kroger from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and raised their price target for the stock from $58.00 to $65.00 in a report on Tuesday, April 16th. Finally, Wolfe Research raised shares of Kroger to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Friday, June 21st. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the stock currently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus target price of $57.30.

Get Our Latest Research Report on Kroger

Kroger Trading Up 0.7 %

KR stock opened at $50.76 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.97, a current ratio of 0.86 and a quick ratio of 0.45. The Kroger Co. has a 1-year low of $42.10 and a 1-year high of $58.34. The business has a 50 day simple moving average of $52.83 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $51.06. The company has a market capitalization of $36.63 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.32, a PEG ratio of 0.78 and a beta of 0.45.

Kroger (NYSE:KRGet Free Report) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, June 20th. The company reported $1.43 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.33 by $0.10. The company had revenue of $45.27 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $44.86 billion. Kroger had a net margin of 1.43% and a return on equity of 29.89%. Kroger’s quarterly revenue was up .2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.51 earnings per share. Research analysts anticipate that The Kroger Co. will post 4.44 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Kroger Increases Dividend

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Sunday, September 1st. Investors of record on Thursday, August 15th will be paid a dividend of $1.28 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, August 15th. This is a positive change from Kroger’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.29. This represents a $5.12 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 10.09%. Kroger’s dividend payout ratio is presently 39.59%.

Insiders Place Their Bets

In related news, SVP Kenneth C. Kimball sold 30,251 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, April 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $55.98, for a total transaction of $1,693,450.98. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 105,298 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,894,582.04. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. In other news, CFO Todd A. Foley sold 6,616 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, April 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $55.69, for a total transaction of $368,445.04. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 46,958 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,615,091.02. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, SVP Kenneth C. Kimball sold 30,251 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, April 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $55.98, for a total value of $1,693,450.98. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 105,298 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,894,582.04. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 55,796 shares of company stock valued at $3,118,767 in the last quarter. 1.40% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

About Kroger

(Free Report)

The Kroger Co operates as a food and drug retailer in the United States. The company operates combination food and drug stores, multi-department stores, marketplace stores, and price impact warehouses. Its combination food and drug stores offer natural food and organic sections, pharmacies, general merchandise, pet centers, fresh seafood, and organic produce; and multi-department stores provide apparel, home fashion and furnishings, outdoor living, electronics, automotive products, and toys.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Kroger (NYSE:KR)

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