Shares of Kroger Co (NYSE:KR) have earned a consensus recommendation of “Hold” from the twenty-three research firms that are currently covering the stock, MarketBeat.com reports. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have assigned a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating on the company. The average 12 month price target among brokerages that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $30.00.

KR has been the topic of several recent research reports. Credit Suisse Group set a $31.00 target price on shares of Kroger and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, June 29th. Telsey Advisory Group raised their target price on shares of Kroger from $27.00 to $29.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research note on Friday, June 22nd. Citigroup reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $34.00 target price on shares of Kroger in a research note on Tuesday, June 26th. Morgan Stanley reduced their target price on shares of Kroger from $28.00 to $27.00 and set a “hold” rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, September 27th. Finally, Wolfe Research lowered shares of Kroger from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating in a research note on Monday, June 25th.

Shares of NYSE:KR opened at $27.20 on Friday. Kroger has a 12 month low of $20.25 and a 12 month high of $32.74. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.65, a quick ratio of 0.26 and a current ratio of 0.73. The stock has a market cap of $23.21 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.33, a P/E/G ratio of 2.10 and a beta of 0.92.

Kroger (NYSE:KR) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, September 13th. The company reported $0.41 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.38 by $0.03. Kroger had a net margin of 3.05% and a return on equity of 28.05%. The firm had revenue of $27.87 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $27.95 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.39 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 1.0% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts expect that Kroger will post 2.12 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Saturday, December 1st. Investors of record on Thursday, November 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.14 per share. This represents a $0.56 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.06%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, November 14th. Kroger’s payout ratio is 27.45%.

In related news, Director Susan J. Kropf sold 13,000 shares of Kroger stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, July 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $28.43, for a total transaction of $369,590.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 101,171 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,876,291.53. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Calvin J. Kaufman sold 10,500 shares of Kroger stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, October 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.47, for a total transaction of $288,435.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 124,688 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,425,179.36. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 49,575 shares of company stock worth $1,414,369 in the last three months. 1.07% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Landaas & Co. WI ADV acquired a new stake in Kroger during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $100,000. CSat Investment Advisory L.P. acquired a new stake in Kroger during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $109,000. Bridgeworth LLC acquired a new stake in Kroger during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $109,000. Creative Financial Designs Inc. ADV raised its holdings in Kroger by 100.2% during the 2nd quarter. Creative Financial Designs Inc. ADV now owns 5,170 shares of the company’s stock worth $147,000 after buying an additional 2,587 shares during the period. Finally, First Hawaiian Bank acquired a new stake in Kroger during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $148,000. 78.72% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Kroger

The Kroger Co, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a retailer in the United States. It also manufactures and processes food products for sale in its supermarkets. The company operates supermarkets, multi-department stores, jewelry stores, and convenience stores. Its combination food and drug stores offer natural food and organic sections, pharmacies, general merchandise, pet centers, fresh seafood, and organic produce; multi-department stores provide general merchandise items, such as apparel, home fashion and furnishings, outdoor living, electronics, automotive products, toys, and fine jewelry; and price impact warehouse stores offer grocery, and health and beauty care items, as well as meat, dairy, baked goods, and fresh produce items.

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Analyst Recommendations for Kroger (NYSE:KR)

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