Deutsche Bank AG upgraded shares of Fred’s Inc. (NASDAQ:FRED) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note released on Monday morning. The firm currently has $10.00 target price on the stock.
Several other equities research analysts have also recently commented on the company. Zacks Investment Research raised Fred’s from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $18.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, July 20th. MKM Partners reaffirmed a neutral rating and set a $10.00 price objective (down from $13.00) on shares of Fred’s in a research report on Monday, September 5th. Stephens cut Fred’s from an equal weight rating to an underperform rating and set a $9.00 price objective on the stock. in a research report on Wednesday, August 31st. Sidoti began coverage on Fred’s in a research report on Wednesday, July 6th. They set a neutral rating and a $17.00 price objective on the stock. Finally, TheStreet cut Fred’s from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 30th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and three have assigned a hold rating to the company’s stock. Fred’s has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $12.80.
Shares of Fred’s (NASDAQ:FRED) traded down 3.11% during midday trading on Monday, hitting $9.97. The stock had a trading volume of 66,982 shares. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $11.19 and its 200 day moving average price is $13.98. The firm’s market cap is $372.36 million. Fred’s has a 12 month low of $8.98 and a 12 month high of $17.14.
Fred’s (NASDAQ:FRED) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 30th. The company reported ($0.18) earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of ($0.21) by $0.03. Fred’s had a positive return on equity of 0.13% and a negative net margin of 0.37%. The firm earned $529.50 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $546.23 million. During the same period last year, the company earned ($0.13) earnings per share. The company’s revenue was down 3.0% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts forecast that Fred’s will post ($0.35) EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, September 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 2nd were given a $0.06 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, August 31st. This represents a $0.24 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.33%. Fred’s’s payout ratio is -109.09%.
In other Fred’s news, Director Michael Hayes sold 9,369 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, September 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $10.17, for a total value of $95,282.73. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 1,538,152 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $15,643,005.84. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. 6.40% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Arizona State Retirement System boosted its position in shares of Fred’s by 0.6% in the second quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 18,175 shares of the company’s stock valued at $293,000 after buying an additional 100 shares during the last quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. boosted its position in Fred’s by 0.5% in the second quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 83,770 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,350,000 after buying an additional 440 shares during the last quarter. Profund Advisors LLC boosted its position in Fred’s by 4.6% in the second quarter. Profund Advisors LLC now owns 11,456 shares of the company’s stock worth $185,000 after buying an additional 500 shares during the last quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio boosted its position in Fred’s by 6.4% in the second quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 11,129 shares of the company’s stock worth $179,000 after buying an additional 674 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Alliancebernstein L.P. boosted its position in Fred’s by 1.3% in the second quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 60,510 shares of the company’s stock worth $975,000 after buying an additional 795 shares during the last quarter. 95.08% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Fred’s Company Profile
Fred’s, Inc (Fred’s) is engaged in the sale of general merchandise through its retail discount stores and full service pharmacies. The Company sells general merchandise to its over 20 franchisees. The Company has approximately 660 retail stores, over 370 pharmacies, and approximately three specialty pharmacy facilities located in over 15 states mainly in the Southeastern United States.
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