Flowers Foods, Inc. (FLO) Upgraded at Zacks Investment Research

Flowers Foods, Inc. (NYSE:FLO) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report released on Tuesday, October 17th.

According to Zacks, “Flowers Foods, Inc. is one of the largest producers and marketers of a full line of frozen and non-frozen bakery and dessert products in the United States. Flowers Foods consists of Flowers Bakeries and Mrs. Smith’s Bakeries. “

Several other analysts also recently weighed in on the company. BidaskClub raised Flowers Foods from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 29th. Jefferies Group LLC reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $19.00 target price on shares of Flowers Foods in a research note on Thursday, August 31st. Finally, BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $19.00 price target on shares of Flowers Foods in a research report on Thursday, July 20th. Six analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, three have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $19.67.

Shares of Flowers Foods (NYSE FLO) traded up 0.64% during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $18.88. 153,084 shares of the company traded hands. Flowers Foods has a 1-year low of $15.05 and a 1-year high of $21.00. The firm has a market capitalization of $3.95 billion, a PE ratio of 24.87 and a beta of 1.01. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $18.47 and a 200 day moving average price of $18.30.

Flowers Foods (NYSE:FLO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, August 9th. The company reported $0.24 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.23 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $926.64 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $931.26 million. Flowers Foods had a return on equity of 14.79% and a net margin of 4.06%. The business’s revenue was down .9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.26 EPS. Analysts expect that Flowers Foods will post $0.85 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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In other Flowers Foods news, EVP Marta Jones Turner sold 37,062 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $17.91, for a total value of $663,780.42. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 266,444 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,772,012.04. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, Chairman Amos R. Mcmullian purchased 20,000 shares of Flowers Foods stock in a transaction on Monday, August 14th. The stock was bought at an average cost of $17.91 per share, with a total value of $358,200.00. Following the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 3,643,717 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $65,258,971.47. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 98,735 shares of company stock valued at $1,818,921. 15.81% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. bought a new position in shares of Flowers Foods in the third quarter worth about $391,000. Aperio Group LLC increased its stake in shares of Flowers Foods by 13.0% in the third quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 40,563 shares of the company’s stock worth $763,000 after purchasing an additional 4,662 shares during the period. First Trust Advisors LP increased its stake in shares of Flowers Foods by 21.4% in the third quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 1,075,196 shares of the company’s stock worth $20,224,000 after purchasing an additional 189,257 shares during the period. Hamlin Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Flowers Foods by 15.8% in the third quarter. Hamlin Capital Management LLC now owns 3,860,784 shares of the company’s stock worth $72,621,000 after purchasing an additional 525,394 shares during the period. Finally, Nationwide Fund Advisors increased its stake in shares of Flowers Foods by 8.9% in the third quarter. Nationwide Fund Advisors now owns 344,856 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,487,000 after purchasing an additional 28,076 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 64.55% of the company’s stock.

About Flowers Foods

Flowers Foods, Inc is a producer and marketer of packaged bakery products. The Company operates in two segments: direct-store-delivery segment (DSD Segment) and warehouse delivery segment (Warehouse Segment). The DSD segment produces fresh breads, buns, rolls, tortillas and snack cakes sold primarily by a network of independent distributors to retail and foodservice customers in the areas of the United States: East, South, Southwest, California, and select markets in the Midwest, Pacific Northwest, Nevada, and Colorado.

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