Shares of Fred’s Inc. (NASDAQ:FRED) saw unusually-high trading volume on Thursday . Approximately 181,570 shares traded hands during trading, an increase of 50% from the previous session’s volume of 120,692 shares.The stock last traded at $14.21 and had previously closed at $14.92.

FRED has been the topic of several recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research raised Fred’s from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $18.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, July 20th. MKM Partners reissued a “neutral” rating and issued a $14.00 target price on shares of Fred’s in a research note on Thursday, July 7th. Deutsche Bank AG reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $15.00 target price on shares of Fred’s in a research note on Tuesday. Finally, Sidoti began coverage on Fred’s in a research note on Wednesday, July 6th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $17.00 target price on the stock. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $16.20.

The company’s market cap is $532.86 million. The company has a 50-day moving average of $15.58 and a 200-day moving average of $14.84.

Fred’s (NASDAQ:FRED) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 26th. The company reported $0.03 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.02 by $0.01. The company earned $549.55 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $553.90 million. Fred’s’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.0% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts expect that Fred’s Inc. will post $0.28 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, Director Michael Hayes sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, June 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $15.20, for a total value of $76,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 1,586,066 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $24,108,203.20. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink.

Several hedge funds and institutional investors recently added to or reduced their stakes in FRED. California State Teachers Retirement System raised its position 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 last quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System raised its position 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 last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position 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 last quarter.

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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