Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA Increases Holdings in Kroger Co (NYSE:KR)

Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA grew its holdings in shares of Kroger Co (NYSE:KR) by 1.8% in the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 3,784,921 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 67,301 shares during the quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA owned approximately 0.47% of Kroger worth $97,575,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other hedge funds have also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Citizens Financial Group Inc RI boosted its stake in Kroger by 21.6% in the 3rd quarter. Citizens Financial Group Inc RI now owns 2,323 shares of the company’s stock worth $60,000 after purchasing an additional 413 shares during the period. Delta Asset Management LLC TN boosted its stake in Kroger by 35.8% in the 3rd quarter. Delta Asset Management LLC TN now owns 1,630 shares of the company’s stock worth $42,000 after purchasing an additional 430 shares during the period. Cedar Wealth Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Kroger by 2.0% during the 3rd quarter. Cedar Wealth Management LLC now owns 23,645 shares of the company’s stock valued at $610,000 after acquiring an additional 455 shares during the last quarter. Simmons Bank boosted its position in shares of Kroger by 1.7% during the 2nd quarter. Simmons Bank now owns 29,368 shares of the company’s stock valued at $638,000 after acquiring an additional 482 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Covington Capital Management boosted its position in shares of Kroger by 10.4% during the 2nd quarter. Covington Capital Management now owns 5,520 shares of the company’s stock valued at $120,000 after acquiring an additional 520 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 80.59% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE KR traded down $0.12 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $26.79. 1,849,231 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 8,237,368. The company has a market capitalization of $21.64 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.70, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.94 and a beta of 0.56. The company has a quick ratio of 0.27, a current ratio of 0.76 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.15. Kroger Co has a 52-week low of $20.70 and a 52-week high of $31.31. The company’s 50-day simple moving average is $25.24 and its two-hundred day simple moving average is $23.93.

Kroger (NYSE:KR) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, September 12th. The company reported $0.44 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.41 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $28.17 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $28.34 billion. Kroger had a return on equity of 21.17% and a net margin of 1.36%. Kroger’s revenue for the quarter was up .5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.41 EPS. As a group, sell-side analysts forecast that Kroger Co will post 2.19 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Sunday, December 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, November 15th will be paid a $0.16 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, November 14th. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.39%. Kroger’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 30.33%.

KR has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Jefferies Financial Group downgraded Kroger from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and dropped their price target for the company from $29.00 to $26.00 in a research report on Thursday, October 10th. UBS Group lifted their price target on Kroger from $25.00 to $26.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research report on Friday, September 13th. Credit Suisse Group reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $29.00 price target (up previously from $27.00) on shares of Kroger in a research report on Friday, September 13th. Deutsche Bank upgraded Kroger from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and lifted their price target for the company from $22.00 to $27.00 in a research report on Tuesday. Finally, Oppenheimer dropped their price target on Kroger from $28.00 to $26.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, October 28th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company. Kroger currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $27.35.

In other Kroger news, SVP Mary Ellen Adcock sold 15,400 shares of Kroger stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $28.00, for a total value of $431,200.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 121,085 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,390,380. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, COO Michael Joseph Donnelly sold 1,574 shares of Kroger stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $26.46, for a total value of $41,648.04. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 324,209 shares in the company, valued at $8,578,570.14. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 134,323 shares of company stock worth $3,537,389 over the last ninety days. Insiders own 1.34% of the company’s stock.

About Kroger

The Kroger Co operates as a retailer in the United States. The company operates supermarkets, multi-department stores, marketplace stores, and price impact warehouse stores. Its combination food and drug stores offer natural food and organic sections, pharmacies, general merchandise, pet centers, fresh seafood, and organic produce; and multi-department stores provide apparel, home fashion and furnishings, outdoor living, electronics, automotive products, and toys.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Kroger (NYSE:KR)

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