Freshpet Target of Unusually Large Options Trading (FRPT)

Freshpet Inc (NASDAQ:FRPT) saw some unusual options trading activity on Monday. Investors bought 1,574 put options on the stock. This is an increase of 1,540% compared to the average volume of 96 put options.

A number of brokerages have recently issued reports on FRPT. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Freshpet from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday. Credit Suisse Group raised their price target on shares of Freshpet from $26.00 to $32.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, August 13th. Robert W. Baird raised their price target on shares of Freshpet from $27.00 to $35.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday, July 30th. Stifel Nicolaus raised their price target on shares of Freshpet from $27.00 to $33.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 7th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Freshpet from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 1st. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, four have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $27.14.

Shares of NASDAQ FRPT opened at $35.44 on Tuesday. The stock has a market cap of $1.28 billion, a PE ratio of -295.33 and a beta of 1.55. Freshpet has a 52-week low of $15.39 and a 52-week high of $40.58.

Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Monday, August 6th. The company reported ($0.10) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.07) by ($0.03). The company had revenue of $47.60 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $46.08 million. Freshpet had a negative net margin of 3.33% and a negative return on equity of 5.05%. The business’s revenue was up 23.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned ($0.08) EPS. As a group, sell-side analysts forecast that Freshpet will post -0.05 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, VP Stephen Macchiaverna sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $33.00, for a total transaction of $165,000.00. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 77,938 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,571,954. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, COO Scott James Morris sold 3,512 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $37.75, for a total transaction of $132,578.00. Following the sale, the chief operating officer now directly owns 173,672 shares in the company, valued at $6,556,118. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 100,546 shares of company stock worth $3,458,300 over the last three months. 5.10% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its stake in shares of Freshpet by 13.3% in the 2nd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 778,054 shares of the company’s stock worth $21,357,000 after purchasing an additional 91,592 shares during the period. Hood River Capital Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Freshpet in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $8,110,000. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC lifted its stake in shares of Freshpet by 550.7% in the 3rd quarter. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC now owns 65,069 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,388,000 after purchasing an additional 55,069 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Freshpet by 10.1% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 1,679,807 shares of the company’s stock worth $46,110,000 after purchasing an additional 153,678 shares during the period. Finally, King Luther Capital Management Corp bought a new position in shares of Freshpet in the 2nd quarter worth approximately $485,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 72.97% of the company’s stock.

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Freshpet Company Profile

Freshpet, Inc manufactures and markets natural fresh products, refrigerated meals, and treats for dogs and cats in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The company sells its products under the Freshpet brand; and Dognation and Dog Joy labels through various classes of retail, including grocery, mass, club, pet specialty, and natural, as well as online.

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