SunOpta (STKL) Upgraded to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

SunOpta (NASDAQ:STKL) (TSE:SOY) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “SunOpta Inc. is an operator of high-growth ethical businesses, focusing on integrated business models in the natural and organic food, supplements and health and beauty markets. The Company has three business units: the SunOpta Food Group, which specializes in sourcing, processing and distribution of natural and organic food products integrated from seed through packaged products; the Opta Minerals Group, a producer, distributor, and recycler of environmentally friendly industrial materials; and the SunOpta BioProcess Group which engineers and markets proprietary steam explosion technology systems for the pulp, bio-fuel and food processing industries. Each of these business units has proprietary products and services that give it a solid competitive advantage in its sector. “

Several other research analysts have also commented on the stock. BidaskClub lowered shares of SunOpta from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, September 13th. ValuEngine lowered shares of SunOpta from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, November 7th. Finally, TheStreet lowered shares of SunOpta from a “c-” rating to a “d+” rating in a research note on Friday, November 9th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $10.00.

Shares of NASDAQ:STKL traded down $0.04 during trading hours on Wednesday, hitting $4.60. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 397,765 shares, compared to its average volume of 775,785. SunOpta has a 52 week low of $4.14 and a 52 week high of $9.10. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.98, a quick ratio of 0.38 and a current ratio of 1.23. The firm has a market cap of $411.54 million, a P/E ratio of -32.86 and a beta of 1.15.

SunOpta (NASDAQ:STKL) (TSE:SOY) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, November 7th. The company reported ($0.04) EPS for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of ($0.04). SunOpta had a negative net margin of 10.52% and a negative return on equity of 7.59%. The business had revenue of $308.37 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $317.80 million. On average, research analysts predict that SunOpta will post -0.22 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Engineers Gate Manager LP purchased a new stake in SunOpta during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $167,000. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC purchased a new stake in SunOpta during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $200,000. Franklin Resources Inc. grew its position in SunOpta by 220.9% during the 3rd quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 63,610 shares of the company’s stock worth $468,000 after purchasing an additional 43,790 shares during the last quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board purchased a new stake in SunOpta during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $566,000. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC purchased a new stake in SunOpta during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $668,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 79.72% of the company’s stock.

SunOpta Company Profile

SunOpta Inc sources non-genetically modified (non-GMO) and organic ingredients; and manufactures food and beverage products in the United States, Canada, Europe, Mexico, and Ethiopia. The company operates through Global Ingredients and Consumer Products segments. The Global Ingredients segment offers organic fruit- and vegetable-based raw materials and ingredients, sweeteners, cocoa, coffees, ancient grains, nuts, seeds and pulses, and other organic food products; identity preserved, non-GMO, and organic seeds and grains, including soy, corn, and sunflower; and seed and grain-based animal feed, and pet food products.

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