Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Kraft Heinz (NASDAQ:KHC) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report issued on Tuesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Kraft Heinz has lagged the industry in the past three months. This is mainly attributable to continued softness in the Canada region, stemming from product discontinuations and higher promotional expenses. We note that sales in this region have been falling year over year for three straight quarters now. Moreover, escalated overhead and input cost has been a deterrent to the company’s performance. In fact, such costs more than offset growth in organic sales while also impacting overall profitability in the third quarter. Nevertheless, Kraft Heinz has been gaining from Improved volume/mix in almost all segments and consumption growth in the United States. Further, the company has solid innovation initiatives planned in the foodservice space to fuel growth across all regions. It is also making innovation efforts in its growing e-commerce channel. We also commend on the company’s well-chalked saving and productivity efforts.”

KHC has been the subject of several other research reports. BidaskClub upgraded Kraft Heinz from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Tuesday, October 9th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $62.00 price target on Kraft Heinz and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Friday, November 2nd. ValuEngine upgraded Kraft Heinz from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a report on Thursday, December 13th. Morgan Stanley set a $49.00 price target on Kraft Heinz and gave the company a sell rating in a report on Wednesday, November 7th. Finally, Susquehanna Bancshares restated a negative rating and set a $47.00 price target (down previously from $59.00) on shares of Kraft Heinz in a report on Friday, November 2nd. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating, eleven have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $66.89.

Shares of NASDAQ:KHC traded down $0.15 during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $45.45. 360,870 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 7,287,324. The company has a market cap of $55.03 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.80, a PEG ratio of 2.19 and a beta of 0.65. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.47, a current ratio of 1.00 and a quick ratio of 0.57. Kraft Heinz has a one year low of $41.60 and a one year high of $80.67.

Kraft Heinz (NASDAQ:KHC) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 1st. The company reported $0.78 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.81 by ($0.03). The business had revenue of $6.38 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $6.31 billion. Kraft Heinz had a net margin of 39.56% and a return on equity of 6.62%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.83 earnings per share. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Kraft Heinz will post 3.62 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, December 14th. Stockholders of record on Friday, November 16th were paid a $0.625 dividend. This represents a $2.50 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 5.50%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, November 15th. Kraft Heinz’s payout ratio is 70.42%.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of KHC. Highwater Wealth Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Kraft Heinz during the 4th quarter worth approximately $28,000. Mainstay Capital Management LLC ADV lifted its stake in shares of Kraft Heinz by 441.8% during the 3rd quarter. Mainstay Capital Management LLC ADV now owns 1,257 shares of the company’s stock worth $368,000 after acquiring an additional 1,025 shares during the last quarter. Central Bank & Trust Co. lifted its stake in shares of Kraft Heinz by 35.3% during the 3rd quarter. Central Bank & Trust Co. now owns 1,915 shares of the company’s stock worth $106,000 after acquiring an additional 500 shares during the last quarter. Blume Capital Management Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Kraft Heinz by 166.7% during the 3rd quarter. Blume Capital Management Inc. now owns 2,080 shares of the company’s stock worth $115,000 after acquiring an additional 1,300 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC lifted its stake in shares of Kraft Heinz by 64.7% during the 2nd quarter. Chicago Partners Investment Group LLC now owns 2,278 shares of the company’s stock worth $143,000 after acquiring an additional 895 shares during the last quarter. 62.62% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Kraft Heinz Company Profile

The Kraft Heinz Company manufactures and markets food and beverage products in the United States, Canada, Europe, and internationally. Its products include condiments and sauces, cheese and dairy products, meals, meats, refreshment beverages, coffee, and other grocery products. The company offers its products under the Kraft, Oscar Mayer, Heinz, Philadelphia, Lunchables, Velveeta, Planters, Maxwell House, Capri Sun, Ore-Ida, Kool-Aid, Jell-O, Cracker Barrel, P'Tit Cheese, Tassimo, Classico, Plasmon, Pudliszki, Honig, HP, Benedicta, ABC, Master, Quero, Golden Circle, Wattie's, Glucon D, and Complan names.

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