Kroger shares jump 10% on better-than-expected earnings

Isaac Cain
December 2, 2017

Kroger Co says that it is expecting earnings per share for the year to range from $2.00 to $2.05.

Kroger investors seem to be on board with the plan, with the company's stock surging 12.9% after the announcement. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 69,201,771 shares of the company's stock worth $1,613,786,000 after purchasing an additional 852,864 shares in the last quarter.

Kroger Co. posted results that beat analysts' expectations for the third quarter as lower food costs offset price cuts at its stores.

Wetherby Asset Management Inc. lowered its position in Kroger Co (NYSE:KR) by 20.4% during the first quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. Following the announcement, the stock was up about 10% at $26.80 in early trading indications Thursday. The company has a current ratio of 0.87, a quick ratio of 0.33 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.13.

Over the past 50 days, The Kroger Co. stock's 5.98% off of the high and 31.34% removed from the low.

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Kroger (NYSE:KR) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, November 30th.

The Kroger Co. on 7/30/2017 reported its EPS as $0.41 with the analysts projecting the EPS of the stock as $0.41. The company now has an average rating of "Hold" and an average target price of $29.10. Stephens started coverage on Kroger in a research report on Friday, August 11th. Vetr raised shares of Kroger from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating and set a $27.01 target price for the company in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. Return on Equity (ROE) stands at 24% and Return on Investment (ROI) of 11.9 percent. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.41 EPS. equities research analysts anticipate that Kroger Co will post 1.99 earnings per share for the current fiscal year. Royal Bank Of Canada set a $34.00 price target on Kroger Company (The) and gave the stock a "buy" rating in a research report on Monday, August 28th. In the same period of past year, the retailer posted EPS of $0.41 and $26.56 billion in revenue.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 1st. Investors of record on Wednesday, November 15th will be paid a $0.125 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 14th. This represents a $0.50 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.88%. In related news, insider Christopher T. Hjelm sold 12,139 shares of the company's stock in a transaction on Wednesday, April 19th. The company presently has a consensus rating of "Hold" and an average target price of $29.44. Also, there are 2 buy, 0 sell and 0 strong sell ratings, collectively assigning a 2.54 average brokerage recommendation.

Kroger is relatively undervalued even though its price-book ratio of 4 underperforms 67% of global grocery stores.

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