Zacks Investment Research Upgrades Hormel Foods (HRL) to “Buy”

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Hormel Foods (NYSE:HRL) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note published on Wednesday, May 30th. They currently have $40.00 price objective on the stock.

According to Zacks, “Over the past month, Hormel Foods' shares have outperformed the industry. In second-quarter fiscal 2018, the company’s adjusted earnings and revenues improved 12.8% and 6.5%, respectively, on a year-over-year basis. The company is strengthening its product portfolio on the back of several innovation investments. Moreover, sturdier demand for on-trend brands and ongoing marketing moves will likely drive its revenues and profitability in the upcoming quarters. Hormel Foods also expects that successful integration of the latest acquisitions and reduced corporate taxes will continue to strengthen its competency, going forward.”

HRL has been the topic of a number of other research reports. Barclays reissued a buy rating and set a $38.00 price objective (down previously from $40.00) on shares of Hormel Foods in a research note on Friday, February 23rd. Jefferies Financial Group reissued a buy rating on shares of Hormel Foods in a research note on Thursday, February 22nd. Credit Suisse Group reissued a neutral rating on shares of Hormel Foods in a research note on Sunday, February 25th. Piper Jaffray Companies reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $39.00 price target on shares of Hormel Foods in a research note on Tuesday, February 27th. Finally, Buckingham Research decreased their price target on Hormel Foods from $34.00 to $32.00 and set a neutral rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, May 25th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. Hormel Foods currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $36.00.



Hormel Foods opened at $36.11 on Wednesday, Marketbeat reports. The company has a market capitalization of $19.42 billion, a PE ratio of 23.00, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.23 and a beta of 0.44. Hormel Foods has a 12 month low of $29.75 and a 12 month high of $38.00. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.12, a current ratio of 1.61 and a quick ratio of 0.73.

Hormel Foods (NYSE:HRL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 24th. The company reported $0.44 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.45 by ($0.01). Hormel Foods had a return on equity of 17.44% and a net margin of 10.05%. The firm had revenue of $2.33 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.37 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.39 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 6.6% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts predict that Hormel Foods will post 1.76 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, August 15th. Investors of record on Monday, July 16th will be paid a dividend of $0.1875 per share. This represents a $0.75 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.08%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, July 13th. Hormel Foods’s payout ratio is 47.77%.

In other Hormel Foods news, Director Elsa A. Murano sold 5,992 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, April 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $35.50, for a total transaction of $212,716.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 82,565 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,931,057.50. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, Director Robert Nakasone sold 14,492 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, April 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $35.59, for a total value of $515,770.28. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 125,284 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,458,857.56. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 325,507 shares of company stock worth $11,419,498. 1.48% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in HRL. IBM Retirement Fund purchased a new position in shares of Hormel Foods in the 1st quarter valued at about $203,000. Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. purchased a new position in Hormel Foods during the 4th quarter worth approximately $205,000. Two Sigma Securities LLC purchased a new position in Hormel Foods during the 4th quarter worth approximately $206,000. Resources Investment Advisors Inc. purchased a new position in Hormel Foods during the 4th quarter worth approximately $218,000. Finally, Ashfield Capital Partners LLC purchased a new position in Hormel Foods during the 4th quarter worth approximately $218,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 40.66% of the company’s stock.

About Hormel Foods

Hormel Foods Corporation produces and markets various meat and food products in the United States and internationally. The company operates through five segments: Grocery Products, Refrigerated Foods, Jennie-O Turkey Store, Specialty Foods, and International & Other. It offers various perishable meat products, including fresh meats, frozen items, refrigerated meal solutions, sausages, hams, guacamole, and bacon; and shelf-stable products, such as canned luncheon meats, peanut butter, chilies, shelf-stable microwaveable meals, hash, stews, meat spreads, flour and corn tortillas, salsas, tortilla chips, and other products.

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