The WestEnd Advisors LLC Has $64,042,000 Stake in Kroger Co. (KR)

The WestEnd Advisors LLC Has $64,042,000 Stake in Kroger Co. (KR)

WestEnd Advisors LLC lowered its stake in Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR) by 17.1% during the third quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 2,157,752 shares of the company’s stock after selling 446,539 shares during the period. Kroger comprises approximately 4.6% of WestEnd Advisors LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 19th largest position. WestEnd Advisors LLC owned approximately 0.23% of Kroger worth $64,042,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds have also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Capital Research Global Investors increased its position in Kroger by 9.7% in the second quarter. Capital Research Global Investors now owns 64,888,884 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,387,262,000 after buying an additional 5,748,043 shares in the last quarter. Janus Capital Management LLC increased its position in Kroger by 14.8% in the second quarter. Janus Capital Management LLC now owns 35,280,006 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,297,932,000 after buying an additional 4,550,220 shares in the last quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. increased its position in Kroger by 11.1% in the second quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 14,668,961 shares of the company’s stock valued at $539,671,000 after buying an additional 1,466,784 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Advisors LLC increased its position in Kroger by 2.1% in the second quarter. BlackRock Advisors LLC now owns 11,758,975 shares of the company’s stock valued at $432,613,000 after buying an additional 241,516 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Group LTD increased its position in Kroger by 0.7% in the second quarter. BlackRock Group LTD now owns 8,168,058 shares of the company’s stock valued at $300,503,000 after buying an additional 60,747 shares in the last quarter. 76.03% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR) opened at 34.91 on Thursday. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $34.19 and its 200 day moving average is $32.96. The firm has a market cap of $32.75 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.78 and a beta of 0.75. Kroger Co. has a 12 month low of $28.71 and a 12 month high of $40.91.

Kroger (NYSE:KR) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, December 1st. The company reported $0.41 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.41. The business earned $26.56 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $26.43 billion. Kroger had a return on equity of 31.48% and a net margin of 1.77%. Kroger’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.43 earnings per share. Equities research analysts expect that Kroger Co. will post $2.11 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, March 1st. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, February 15th will be paid a $0.12 dividend. This represents a $0.48 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.37%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Monday, February 13th. Kroger’s dividend payout ratio is currently 23.08%.

KR has been the topic of several research reports. Jefferies Group decreased their price objective on shares of Kroger to $30.00 in a report on Friday, December 2nd. Vetr downgraded shares of Kroger from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $33.25 price objective on the stock. in a report on Tuesday, October 11th. Citigroup Inc. set a $39.00 price objective on shares of Kroger and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, October 7th. Guggenheim reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $40.00 price objective on shares of Kroger in a report on Monday, October 31st. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG restated a “buy” rating and issued a $39.00 price target on shares of Kroger in a research note on Wednesday, October 26th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating, twelve have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $37.27.

In other Kroger news, insider Christopher T. Hjelm sold 15,120 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $33.25, for a total value of $502,740.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 240,433 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $7,994,397.25. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, VP Oflen Mary Elizabeth Van sold 14,106 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $32.94, for a total value of $464,651.64. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.85% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Kroger Company Profile

The Kroger Co (Kroger) operates retail food and drug stores, multi-department stores, jewelry stores and convenience stores across the United States. The Company also manufactures and processes food for sale in its supermarkets. It operates through retail operations segment. The Company operates, either directly or through its subsidiaries, approximately 2,778 retail food stores under a range of local banner names, approximately 1,387 of which have fuel centers.

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