Royce & Associates LP lowered its position in shares of UniFirst Corp (NYSE:UNF) by 6.5% in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 762,356 shares of the textile maker’s stock after selling 52,592 shares during the period. UniFirst makes up approximately 0.8% of Royce & Associates LP’s portfolio, making the stock its 6th largest position. Royce & Associates LP owned about 3.76% of UniFirst worth $125,713,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in shares of UniFirst by 3.2% during the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 1,948,654 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $321,334,000 after buying an additional 60,478 shares during the last quarter. Rhumbline Advisers increased its holdings in shares of UniFirst by 14.3% during the 4th quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 38,893 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $6,413,000 after buying an additional 4,853 shares during the last quarter. Arizona State Retirement System increased its holdings in shares of UniFirst by 226.6% during the 4th quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 25,984 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $4,285,000 after buying an additional 18,027 shares during the last quarter. Eagle Asset Management Inc. increased its holdings in shares of UniFirst by 2.8% during the 4th quarter. Eagle Asset Management Inc. now owns 23,290 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $3,837,000 after buying an additional 643 shares during the last quarter. Finally, The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company increased its holdings in shares of UniFirst by 5.2% during the 4th quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 40,702 shares of the textile maker’s stock worth $6,711,000 after buying an additional 2,002 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.99% of the company’s stock.
In related news, VP Michael A. Croatti sold 1,202 shares of UniFirst stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $170.26, for a total value of $204,652.52. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 4,420 shares in the company, valued at approximately $752,549.20. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, VP David Martin Katz sold 1,060 shares of UniFirst stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $168.15, for a total transaction of $178,239.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 2,667 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $448,456.05. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 3,722 shares of company stock valued at $628,053 in the last quarter. 1.00% of the stock is owned by insiders.
Shares of UniFirst Corp (NYSE UNF) opened at $155.95 on Friday. The stock has a market cap of $3,145.81, a P/E ratio of 28.19, a PEG ratio of 2.87 and a beta of 0.64. UniFirst Corp has a 1-year low of $129.10 and a 1-year high of $176.15.
UniFirst (NYSE:UNF) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, January 3rd. The textile maker reported $1.60 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.41 by $0.19. The business had revenue of $415.80 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $404.60 million. UniFirst had a net margin of 4.69% and a return on equity of 7.72%. The business’s revenue was up 7.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.38 EPS. research analysts forecast that UniFirst Corp will post 5.41 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 30th. Stockholders of record on Friday, March 9th will be issued a dividend of $0.0375 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, March 8th. This represents a $0.15 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.10%. UniFirst’s dividend payout ratio is currently 4.03%.
Separately, Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of UniFirst from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 20th.
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UniFirst Corporation is a provider of workplace uniforms and protective work wear clothing in the United States. The Company designs, manufactures, personalizes, rents, cleans, delivers, and sells a range of uniforms and protective clothing, including shirts, pants, jackets, coveralls, lab coats, smocks, aprons and specialized protective wear, such as flame resistant and high visibility garments.
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