AdvisorShares Investments LLC Buys New Shares in The Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR)

AdvisorShares Investments LLC purchased a new position in shares of The Kroger Co. (NYSE:KRGet Rating) in the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm purchased 5,222 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $300,000.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Fieldpoint Private Securities LLC increased its holdings in shares of Kroger by 17.8% during the first quarter. Fieldpoint Private Securities LLC now owns 1,126 shares of the company’s stock worth $65,000 after buying an additional 170 shares in the last quarter. Pinnacle Financial Partners Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Kroger by 4.2% during the first quarter. Pinnacle Financial Partners Inc. now owns 4,772 shares of the company’s stock worth $274,000 after buying an additional 194 shares in the last quarter. City Holding Co. increased its holdings in shares of Kroger by 19.7% during the fourth quarter. City Holding Co. now owns 1,215 shares of the company’s stock worth $57,000 after buying an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. Diversified Trust Co increased its holdings in shares of Kroger by 2.9% during the first quarter. Diversified Trust Co now owns 7,151 shares of the company’s stock worth $410,000 after buying an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Kroger by 25.5% during the first quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. now owns 985 shares of the company’s stock worth $57,000 after buying an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 81.52% of the company’s stock.

Kroger Trading Up 1.2 %

Shares of NYSE:KR opened at $47.25 on Friday. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $48.47 and its two-hundred day moving average price is $50.99. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.39, a current ratio of 0.76 and a quick ratio of 0.30. The Kroger Co. has a one year low of $38.22 and a one year high of $62.78. The stock has a market capitalization of $33.81 billion, a PE ratio of 16.29, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.06 and a beta of 0.49.

Kroger (NYSE:KRGet Rating) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, June 16th. The company reported $1.45 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.28 by $0.17. Kroger had a net margin of 1.54% and a return on equity of 31.50%. The firm had revenue of $44.60 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $44.23 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.19 EPS. On average, equities analysts forecast that The Kroger Co. will post 3.92 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Kroger Increases Dividend

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, August 15th will be paid a $0.26 dividend. This is a positive change from Kroger’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.21. The ex-dividend date is Friday, August 12th. This represents a $1.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.20%. Kroger’s dividend payout ratio is currently 28.97%.

Analyst Ratings Changes

Several research firms have recently weighed in on KR. BNP Paribas raised shares of Kroger from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $60.00 price objective for the company in a report on Friday, April 22nd. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft raised their price target on shares of Kroger from $50.00 to $53.00 in a report on Friday, June 17th. Morgan Stanley raised their price target on shares of Kroger from $38.00 to $41.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a report on Friday, June 17th. MKM Partners raised their price target on shares of Kroger from $48.00 to $55.00 in a report on Tuesday, June 21st. Finally, Evercore ISI reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $54.00 price target on shares of Kroger in a report on Friday, June 17th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating, four have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat.com, the stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $52.22.

Kroger Company Profile

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The Kroger Co operates as a retailer in the United States. The company operates combination food and drug stores, multi-department stores, marketplace stores, and price impact warehouses. Its combination food and drug stores offer natural food and organic sections, pharmacies, general merchandise, pet centers, fresh seafood, and organic produce; and multi-department stores provide apparel, home fashion and furnishings, outdoor living, electronics, automotive products, and toys.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Kroger (NYSE:KR)

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