Fred’s Inc. (NASDAQ:FRED) fell 5.5% during mid-day trading on Thursday . The stock traded as low as $15.06 and last traded at $15.17, with a volume of 87,973 shares trading hands. The stock had previously closed at $16.05.

Several brokerages have recently issued reports on FRED. Zacks Investment Research lowered Fred’s from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday. MKM Partners reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and set a $14.00 target price on shares of Fred’s in a research report on Thursday. Sidoti began coverage on Fred’s in a research report on Wednesday. They set a “neutral” rating and a $17.00 target price for the company. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG raised their target price on Fred’s from $14.00 to $15.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 31st. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $16.00.

The stock’s market capitalization is $577.98 million. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $15.08 and a 200-day moving average of $14.86.

Fred’s (NASDAQ:FRED) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 26th. The company reported $0.03 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.02 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $549.55 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $553.90 million. The business’s revenue was up 8.0% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts forecast that Fred’s Inc. will post $0.28 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, June 15th. Investors of record on Wednesday, June 1st were given a dividend of $0.06 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, May 27th. This represents a $0.24 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.55%.

In other Fred’s news, Director Michael Hayes sold 10,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $14.71, for a total value of $147,100.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 1,591,066 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $23,404,580.86. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink.

Other large investors recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. California State Teachers Retirement System increased its stake in Fred’s by 1.8% in the fourth quarter. California State Teachers Retirement System now owns 68,905 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,128,000 after buying an additional 1,244 shares during the period. Sei Investments Co. increased its stake in Fred’s by 11.5% in the fourth quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 99,530 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,629,000 after buying an additional 10,270 shares during the period. California Public Employees Retirement System increased its stake in Fred’s by 12.3% in the fourth quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 237,393 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,886,000 after buying an additional 26,000 shares during the period. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its stake in Fred’s by 1.8% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 3,093,951 shares of the company’s stock valued at $50,648,000 after buying an additional 54,483 shares during the period.

Fred’s, Inc (Fred’s) is engaged in the sale of general merchandise through its retail discount stores and full service pharmacies. The Company sells general merchandise to its over 20 franchisees. The Company has approximately 660 retail stores, over 370 pharmacies, and approximately three specialty pharmacy facilities located in over 15 states mainly in the Southeastern United States.

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