Shares of Flowers Foods Inc. (NYSE:FLO) gapped up before the market opened on Friday . The stock had previously closed at $18.80, but opened at $18.81. Flowers Foods shares last traded at $19.04, with a volume of 388,036 shares.

A number of analysts have commented on the company. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “hold” rating and set a $19.00 price objective on shares of Flowers Foods in a report on Friday, May 20th. KeyCorp initiated coverage on Flowers Foods in a report on Wednesday, May 25th. They set a “sector weight” rating for the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Flowers Foods from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 12th. Finally, Jefferies Group restated a “buy” rating and issued a $20.00 target price on shares of Flowers Foods in a research note on Saturday, April 9th. Six analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $19.86.

The company’s 50-day moving average is $18.47 and its 200-day moving average is $18.76. The stock has a market cap of $4.38 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.52.

Flowers Foods (NYSE:FLO) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 18th. The company reported $0.28 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.29 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $1.02 billion for the quarter. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.29 earnings per share. Analysts expect that Flowers Foods Inc. will post $1.01 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 23rd. Shareholders of record on Thursday, June 9th were issued a $0.16 dividend. This is a boost from Flowers Foods’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.15. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, June 7th. This represents a $0.64 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.34%.

In other Flowers Foods news, SVP Robert L. Benton, Jr. sold 12,065 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, June 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $18.49, for a total transaction of $223,081.85. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 65,610 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,213,128.90. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CAO Karyl H. Lauder sold 23,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, June 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $17.96, for a total transaction of $422,060.00. Following the transaction, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 132,851 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,386,003.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Several institutional investors have made changes to their positions in the stock. Brown Advisory Inc. increased its position in shares of 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 in the last quarter. Westfield Capital Management Co. LP increased its position in shares of Flowers Foods by 72.8% in the fourth quarter. Westfield Capital Management Co. LP now owns 318,740 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,850,000 after buying an additional 134,320 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its position in shares of 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 in the last quarter. Quantitative Investment Management LLC increased its position in shares of Flowers Foods by 1,045.8% in the fourth quarter. Quantitative Investment Management LLC now owns 95,100 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,043,000 after buying an additional 86,800 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. increased its position in shares of Flowers Foods by 9,096.2% in the fourth quarter. Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. now owns 268,620 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,773,000 after buying an additional 265,699 shares in the last quarter.

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.

Get Analysts' Upgrades and Downgrades Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of analysts' upgrades, downgrades and new coverage with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.