Brokerages expect Kroger Co (NYSE:KR) to post sales of $28.25 billion for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Four analysts have made estimates for Kroger’s earnings. The lowest sales estimate is $28.18 billion and the highest is $28.40 billion. Kroger posted sales of $27.67 billion in the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year over year growth rate of 2.1%. The firm is expected to issue its next quarterly earnings results on Thursday, December 5th.

On average, analysts expect that Kroger will report full year sales of $122.80 billion for the current fiscal year, with estimates ranging from $122.39 billion to $123.22 billion. For the next year, analysts anticipate that the company will report sales of $126.00 billion, with estimates ranging from $125.44 billion to $128.16 billion. Zacks’ sales averages are a mean average based on a survey of research analysts that follow Kroger.

Kroger (NYSE:KR) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, September 12th. The company reported $0.44 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.41 by $0.03. Kroger had a return on equity of 21.79% and a net margin of 1.54%. The firm had revenue of $28.17 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $28.34 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.41 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up .5% on a year-over-year basis.

Several equities research analysts recently weighed in on KR shares. TheStreet downgraded Kroger from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a report on Wednesday, June 5th. UBS Group increased their price target on Kroger from $25.00 to $26.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday. Guggenheim set a $26.00 price target on Kroger and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, September 3rd. Sanford C. Bernstein raised Kroger from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $33.00 price target for the company in a report on Monday, May 20th. Finally, Telsey Advisory Group reaffirmed a “market perform” rating and set a $27.00 price target (down from $29.00) on shares of Kroger in a report on Friday, June 21st. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $28.18.

Shares of NYSE KR traded up $0.64 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $26.23. 12,448,878 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 8,862,179. The company has a quick ratio of 0.25, a current ratio of 0.75 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.16. The stock has a 50 day simple moving average of $23.17 and a 200-day simple moving average of $23.96. Kroger has a 1-year low of $20.70 and a 1-year high of $31.98. The firm has a market cap of $20.62 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.43, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.83 and a beta of 0.56.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Sunday, September 1st. Shareholders of record on Thursday, August 15th were issued a $0.16 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, August 14th. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.44%. This is an increase from Kroger’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.14. Kroger’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 30.33%.

In other news, insider Stephen M. Mckinney sold 15,600 shares of Kroger stock in a transaction on Monday, July 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $22.05, for a total transaction of $343,980.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 168,070 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,705,943.50. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, EVP J Michael Schlotman sold 15,000 shares of Kroger stock in a transaction on Monday, July 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $22.01, for a total value of $330,150.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 270,655 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,957,116.55. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 43,600 shares of company stock valued at $955,450. 1.34% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. CIBC Asset Management Inc raised its stake in shares of Kroger by 0.5% during the 1st quarter. CIBC Asset Management Inc now owns 91,859 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,260,000 after buying an additional 417 shares during the last quarter. Simmons Bank increased its position in Kroger by 1.7% during the 2nd quarter. Simmons Bank now owns 29,368 shares of the company’s stock worth $638,000 after purchasing an additional 482 shares in the last quarter. Covington Capital Management increased its position in Kroger by 10.4% during the 2nd quarter. Covington Capital Management now owns 5,520 shares of the company’s stock worth $120,000 after purchasing an additional 520 shares in the last quarter. Keystone Financial Group increased its position in Kroger by 4.9% during the 2nd quarter. Keystone Financial Group now owns 11,264 shares of the company’s stock worth $245,000 after purchasing an additional 527 shares in the last quarter. Finally, 6 Meridian increased its position in Kroger by 3.6% during the 2nd quarter. 6 Meridian now owns 17,271 shares of the company’s stock worth $375,000 after purchasing an additional 595 shares in the last quarter. 80.64% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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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Earnings History and Estimates for Kroger (NYSE:KR)

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