Sanderson Farms, Inc. (SAFM) Rating Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Sanderson Farms, Inc. (NASDAQ:SAFM) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “Snderson Farms Inc. is a fully-integrated poultry processing company engaged in the production, processing, marketing and distribution of fresh and frozen chicken products. The company sells ice pack, chill pack and frozen chicken, in whole, cut-up and boneless form, primarily under the Sanderson Farms7 brand name to retailers, distributors, and fast food operators principally in the southeastern, southwestern and western United States. “

A number of other research analysts have also commented on SAFM. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “hold” rating and set a $130.00 price objective on shares of Sanderson Farms in a report on Tuesday, June 27th. BidaskClub lowered Sanderson Farms from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, June 29th. Stephens lowered Sanderson Farms from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and set a $145.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Thursday, August 17th. J P Morgan Chase & Co reissued a “neutral” rating and set a $129.00 price objective (up previously from $112.00) on shares of Sanderson Farms in a report on Thursday, August 24th. Finally, Barclays PLC set a $136.00 price objective on Sanderson Farms and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, August 25th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating, four have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. Sanderson Farms presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $129.82.

Sanderson Farms (NASDAQ:SAFM) traded down 0.49% during trading on Wednesday, reaching $147.92. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 219,327 shares. The firm has a market capitalization of $3.36 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.87 and a beta of 0.58. Sanderson Farms has a 52-week low of $74.07 and a 52-week high of $166.65. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $154.16 and its 200 day moving average is $128.45.

Sanderson Farms (NASDAQ:SAFM) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, August 24th. The company reported $5.09 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $3.47 by $1.62. The business had revenue of $931.90 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $921.40 million. Sanderson Farms had a return on equity of 22.21% and a net margin of 8.77%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 28.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $2.42 EPS. On average, analysts predict that Sanderson Farms will post $12.72 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other Sanderson Farms news, Director Robert C. Khayat sold 1,775 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $142.31, for a total value of $252,600.25. Following the sale, the director now owns 12,043 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,713,839.33. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director Fred L. Banks, Jr. sold 3,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $144.11, for a total value of $432,330.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 24,948 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,595,256.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 5,400 shares of company stock worth $771,199 in the last ninety days. Insiders own 5.66% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in SAFM. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in Sanderson Farms by 38,073.7% in the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,700,788 shares of the company’s stock valued at $280,451,000 after buying an additional 2,693,713 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its holdings in Sanderson Farms by 42.7% in the 1st quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,374,475 shares of the company’s stock valued at $142,725,000 after buying an additional 411,406 shares during the last quarter. Koch Industries Inc. acquired a new stake in Sanderson Farms in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $309,000. Origin Asset Management LLP acquired a new stake in Sanderson Farms in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $32,665,000. Finally, Alliancebernstein L.P. grew its holdings in Sanderson Farms by 603.4% in the 2nd quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 270,004 shares of the company’s stock valued at $31,226,000 after buying an additional 231,621 shares during the last quarter. 99.95% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Sanderson Farms Company Profile

Sanderson Farms, Inc is a poultry processing company. The Company is engaged in the production, processing, marketing and distribution of fresh and frozen chicken, and also preparation, processing, marketing and distribution of processed and minimally prepared chicken. It sells ice pack, chill pack, bulk pack and frozen chicken, in whole, cut-up and boneless form, under the Sanderson Farms brand name to retailers, distributors, casual dining operators, customers reselling frozen chicken into export markets.

Analyst Recommendations for Sanderson Farms (NASDAQ:SAFM)

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