Hormel Foods Corp. (NYSE:HRL)’s share price gapped up prior to trading on Friday . The stock had previously closed at $36.58, but opened at $36.61. Hormel Foods Corp. shares last traded at $37.31, with a volume of 2,659,547 shares changing hands.

Several brokerages recently commented on HRL. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Hormel Foods Corp. from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, May 6th. Jefferies Group reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $40.00 price target (down previously from $43.00) on shares of Hormel Foods Corp. in a report on Thursday, May 19th. Vetr upgraded shares of Hormel Foods Corp. from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $44.45 price target on the stock in a report on Thursday, April 14th. Credit Agricole SA began coverage on shares of Hormel Foods Corp. in a report on Wednesday, April 13th. They issued an “underperform” rating on the stock. Finally, BB&T Corp. downgraded shares of Hormel Foods Corp. from a “hold” rating to an “underweight” rating in a report on Tuesday, April 5th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating, one has given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $39.83.

The stock has a market cap of $19.79 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.76. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $35.91 and a 200 day moving average price of $39.07.

Hormel Foods Corp. (NYSE:HRL) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 18th. The company reported $0.40 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.39 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $2.30 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.30 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.34 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up .9% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts forecast that Hormel Foods Corp. will post $1.60 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, August 15th. Investors of record on Monday, July 18th will be paid a dividend of $0.145 per share. This represents a $0.58 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.55%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, July 14th.

In related news, Director Dakota A. Pippins sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $36.74, for a total transaction of $183,700.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 96,416 shares in the company, valued at $3,542,323.84. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website.

A number of large investors have bought and sold shares of the company. Bank of Montreal Can boosted its stake in Hormel Foods Corp. by 49.5% in the fourth quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 404,191 shares of the company’s stock valued at $31,963,000 after buying an additional 133,892 shares during the last quarter. Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK boosted its stake in Hormel Foods Corp. by 6.6% in the fourth quarter. Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK now owns 74,615 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,111,000 after buying an additional 4,639 shares during the last quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. boosted its stake in Hormel Foods Corp. by 24.4% in the fourth quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 319,229 shares of the company’s stock valued at $25,249,000 after buying an additional 62,629 shares during the last quarter. State of Tennessee Treasury Department boosted its stake in Hormel Foods Corp. by 305.1% in the fourth quarter. State of Tennessee Treasury Department now owns 83,046 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,567,000 after buying an additional 62,546 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State of Wisconsin Investment Board boosted its stake in Hormel Foods Corp. by 25.5% in the fourth quarter. State of Wisconsin Investment Board now owns 154,270 shares of the company’s stock valued at $12,200,000 after buying an additional 31,330 shares during the last quarter.

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