Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT) Raised to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report issued on Tuesday morning, Zacks.com reports. The brokerage currently has $51.00 price target on the stock.

According to Zacks, “Freshpet Inc. is a pet food company. The company manufactures and markets natural fresh foods, refrigerated meals, and treats for dogs and cats in the United States and Canada. Freshpet provides meats- based recipes, such as chicken, beef, lamb and salmon; fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, peas and leafy green vegetables, and high-fiber grains, such as brown rice, oats and barley. It sells its products under the Freshpet, Dognation, and Dog Joy brand names. Freshpet Inc. is headquartered in Secaucus, New Jersey. “

Several other research firms have also recently commented on FRPT. SunTrust Banks cut LegacyTexas Financial Group from a buy rating to a hold rating and decreased their target price for the stock from $43.00 to $39.05 in a research note on Tuesday, June 18th. TheStreet cut Whitestone REIT from a b- rating to a c+ rating in a research note on Monday, April 1st. DA Davidson started coverage on Nomad Foods in a research note on Wednesday, June 19th. They set a buy rating and a $26.00 target price for the company. Finally, BidaskClub raised Zai Lab from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note on Friday, June 28th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $43.57.

NASDAQ FRPT opened at $45.89 on Tuesday. The business’s 50 day simple moving average is $46.71. Freshpet has a one year low of $25.81 and a one year high of $51.85. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.68 billion, a PE ratio of -305.93 and a beta of 1.11. The company has a quick ratio of 0.72, a current ratio of 1.08 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.07.

Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT) last released its earnings results on Monday, May 6th. The company reported ($0.10) EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of ($0.09) by ($0.01). Freshpet had a negative return on equity of 4.46% and a negative net margin of 2.57%. The business had revenue of $54.80 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $54.28 million. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned ($0.10) EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 26.9% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that Freshpet will post 0.06 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, CFO Richard A. Kassar sold 55,509 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, June 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.78, for a total value of $2,652,220.02. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 184,463 shares in the company, valued at $8,813,642.14. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Scott James Morris sold 49,766 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, June 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.79, for a total value of $2,378,317.14. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 170,232 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,135,387.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 174,104 shares of company stock worth $8,335,030. Corporate insiders own 5.10% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. FMR LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Freshpet by 749.2% in the first quarter. FMR LLC now owns 2,538,489 shares of the company’s stock valued at $107,353,000 after purchasing an additional 2,239,553 shares in the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lifted its holdings in shares of Freshpet by 1.5% in the first quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 993,411 shares of the company’s stock valued at $42,012,000 after purchasing an additional 14,796 shares in the last quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Freshpet by 5.0% in the first quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 925,062 shares of the company’s stock valued at $39,121,000 after purchasing an additional 43,950 shares in the last quarter. Wasatch Advisors Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Freshpet by 11.2% in the first quarter. Wasatch Advisors Inc. now owns 649,955 shares of the company’s stock valued at $27,487,000 after purchasing an additional 65,505 shares in the last quarter. Finally, OppenheimerFunds Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Freshpet by 33.3% in the first quarter. OppenheimerFunds Inc. now owns 609,260 shares of the company’s stock valued at $25,765,000 after purchasing an additional 152,158 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 86.74% of the company’s stock.

Freshpet Company Profile

Freshpet, Inc manufactures and markets natural fresh products, refrigerated meals, and treats for dogs and cats in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The company sells its products under the Freshpet brand; and Dognation and Dog Joy labels through various classes of retail, including grocery, mass, club, pet specialty, and natural, as well as online.

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Analyst Recommendations for Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT)

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