Flowers Foods Inc. (NYSE:FLO) traded up 3.3% on Wednesday . The company traded as high as $19.03 and last traded at $18.88, with a volume of 2,041,535 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $18.27.

A number of equities research analysts recently weighed in on the company. BMO Capital Markets restated a “hold” rating and set a $19.00 price objective on shares of Flowers Foods in a research note on Friday, May 20th. KeyCorp assumed coverage on Flowers Foods in a research report on Wednesday, May 25th. They set a “sector weight” rating on the stock. Zacks Investment Research raised Flowers Foods from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 12th. Finally, Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $20.00 target price on shares of Flowers Foods in a research report on Saturday, April 9th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $19.86.

The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $18.42 and its 200 day moving average price is $18.97. The stock has a market cap of $4.01 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.22.

Flowers Foods (NYSE:FLO) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 18th. The company reported $0.28 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.29 by $0.01. The firm earned $1.02 billion during the quarter. Flowers Foods’s revenue was up 5.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.29 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Flowers Foods Inc. will post $1.01 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 23rd. Stockholders of record on Thursday, June 9th were paid a $0.16 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, June 7th. This is a positive change from Flowers Foods’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.15. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.39%.

In related news, SVP Robert L. Benton, Jr. sold 12,065 shares of Flowers Foods stock in a transaction on Thursday, June 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $18.49, for a total value of $223,081.85. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 65,610 shares in the company, valued at $1,213,128.90. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Chairman George E. Deese sold 560,731 shares of Flowers Foods stock in a transaction on Friday, June 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $18.69, for a total value of $10,480,062.39. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now owns 3,255,743 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $60,849,836.67. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

A number of hedge funds and institutional investors recently added to or reduced their stakes in FLO. NorthCoast Asset Management LLC bought a new position in Flowers Foods during the fourth quarter worth about $1,146,000. California State Teachers Retirement System raised its position in Flowers Foods by 1.6% in the fourth quarter. California State Teachers Retirement System now owns 323,607 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,954,000 after buying an additional 4,954 shares during the period. OppenheimerFunds Inc. raised its position in Flowers Foods by 3.1% in the fourth quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 3,016,132 shares of the company’s stock worth $64,817,000 after buying an additional 89,472 shares during the period. Brown Advisory Inc. raised its position in Flowers Foods by 0.6% in the fourth quarter. Brown Advisory Inc. now owns 162,908 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,500,000 after buying an additional 922 shares during the period. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in Flowers Foods by 6.3% in the fourth quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 14,532,095 shares of the company’s stock worth $312,295,000 after buying an additional 855,280 shares during the period.

Flowers Foods, Inc is a producer and marketer of bakery products. The Company operates in two segments: direct-store-delivery segment (DSD Segment) and warehouse delivery segment (Warehouse Segment). The DSD segment’s production plant locations include Birmingham, Alabama; Opelika, Alabama; Tuscaloosa, Alabama; Goldsboro, North Carolina; Jamestown, North Carolina, and Oxford, Pennsylvania.

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