Scotts Miracle-Gro Co. (NYSE:SMG) gapped up before the market opened on Friday . The stock had previously closed at $71.59, but opened at $72.31. Scotts Miracle-Gro shares last traded at $73.93, with a volume of 198,831 shares traded.

SMG has been the subject of a number of research reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Scotts Miracle-Gro from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 11th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded Scotts Miracle-Gro from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $70.00 target price for the company. in a report on Tuesday, March 22nd. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, SunTrust Banks Inc. lifted their target price on Scotts Miracle-Gro to $85.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, March 30th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Scotts Miracle-Gro presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $78.33.

The company’s 50-day moving average price is $68.88 and its 200-day moving average price is $68.66. The company has a market capitalization of $4.54 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.36.

Scotts Miracle-Gro (NYSE:SMG) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, May 3rd. The company reported $3.00 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.51 by $0.49. The business earned $1.25 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.24 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $2.29 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 16.2% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts expect that Scotts Miracle-Gro Co. will post $3.88 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 10th. Shareholders of record on Friday, May 27th were paid a $0.47 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, May 25th. This represents a $1.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.54%.

In other Scotts Miracle-Gro news, CEO James Hagedorn sold 44,630 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $66.90, for a total value of $2,985,747.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 7,451 shares in the company, valued at approximately $498,471.90. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website.

Other hedge funds and institutional investors have made changes to their positions in the company. TD Asset Management Inc. increased its position in shares of Scotts Miracle-Gro by 17.3% in the fourth quarter. TD Asset Management Inc. now owns 21,700 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,400,000 after buying an additional 3,200 shares during the period. Liberty Mutual Group Asset Management Inc. increased its position in shares of Scotts Miracle-Gro by 51.4% in the fourth quarter. Liberty Mutual Group Asset Management Inc. now owns 29,222 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,886,000 after buying an additional 9,921 shares during the period. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC increased its position in shares of Scotts Miracle-Gro by 0.3% in the fourth quarter. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC now owns 30,404 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,961,000 after buying an additional 90 shares during the period. LSV Asset Management acquired a new position in shares of Scotts Miracle-Gro during the fourth quarter worth about $3,489,000. Finally, Retirement Systems of Alabama increased its position in shares of Scotts Miracle-Gro by 1.7% in the fourth quarter. Retirement Systems of Alabama now owns 58,491 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,773,000 after buying an additional 997 shares during the period.

The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (Scotts Miracle-Gro) is a manufacturer and marketer of branded consumer lawn and gardens products. The Company’s segments include Global Consumer, which manufactures and markets consumer lawn and gardens products, including lawn care, Gardening and Landscape and Home Protection, and Scotts LawnService, which provides residential and commercial lawn care, tree and shrub care and limited pest control services in the United States through periodic applications of fertilizer and control products.

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