Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Dollar General (NYSE:DG) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report report published on Thursday. The firm currently has $118.00 target price on the stock.
According to Zacks, “Shares of Dollar General have showcased a bullish run in a year. The stock has the potential to scale higher with solid prospects, brand recognition and earnings outlook likely to act as propellants. The second-quarter fiscal 2018 performance is the testimony of the same. The company’s commitment toward better pricing, private label offering, effective inventory management, and merchandise and operational initiatives should drive sales and margins. These along with a compelling store growth story at convenient locations and focus on consumable products lend the company an edge. However, any deleverage in SG&A rate owing to higher labor expenses, occupancy costs and utilities expenses might impact margins. Moreover, increasing threat from online retailers on parameters such as same-day delivery and pricing cannot be ignored. Not to forget, a cut in SNAP benefit may also weigh on the performance.”
DG has been the subject of several other research reports. Morgan Stanley increased their price objective on shares of Dollar General from $116.00 to $118.00 and gave the company an overweight rating in a research report on Friday, August 31st. Credit Suisse Group set a $99.00 price objective on shares of Dollar General and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Monday, August 27th. Guggenheim reiterated a buy rating and set a $115.00 price objective on shares of Dollar General in a research report on Monday, August 20th. Northcoast Research reiterated a neutral rating on shares of Dollar General in a research report on Tuesday, June 26th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co increased their price objective on shares of Dollar General from $113.00 to $118.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 29th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating, fifteen have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Dollar General currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $105.30.
Dollar General (NYSE:DG) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, August 30th. The company reported $1.52 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.49 by $0.03. Dollar General had a net margin of 7.06% and a return on equity of 23.51%. The firm had revenue of $6.44 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $6.38 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.10 earnings per share. Dollar General’s revenue for the quarter was up 10.6% on a year-over-year basis. Research analysts anticipate that Dollar General will post 6.1 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 23rd. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, October 9th will be issued a $0.29 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, October 5th. This represents a $1.16 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.12%. Dollar General’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 25.84%.
In other news, EVP Robert D. Ravener sold 22,440 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, September 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $111.49, for a total value of $2,501,835.60. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 50,747 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,657,783.03. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. 0.41% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.
Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its stake in Dollar General by 1.6% in the 1st quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,319,355 shares of the company’s stock worth $123,426,000 after buying an additional 20,833 shares during the period. Stifel Financial Corp increased its stake in Dollar General by 12.5% in the 1st quarter. Stifel Financial Corp now owns 32,178 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,998,000 after buying an additional 3,568 shares during the period. Asset Management One Co. Ltd. increased its stake in Dollar General by 4.0% in the 1st quarter. Asset Management One Co. Ltd. now owns 462,670 shares of the company’s stock worth $43,283,000 after buying an additional 17,673 shares during the period. Old Mutual Global Investors UK Ltd. purchased a new position in Dollar General in the 1st quarter worth about $7,624,000. Finally, Nomura Asset Management Co. Ltd. increased its stake in Dollar General by 2.3% in the 1st quarter. Nomura Asset Management Co. Ltd. now owns 38,957 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,645,000 after buying an additional 892 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 95.00% of the company’s stock.
Dollar General Company Profile
Dollar General Corporation, a discount retailer, provides various merchandise products in the southern, southwestern, Midwestern, and eastern United States. The company offers consumable products, including paper and cleaning products, such as paper towels, bath tissues, paper dinnerware, trash and storage bags, and laundry and other home cleaning supplies; packaged food comprising cereals, canned soups and vegetables, condiments, spices, sugar, and flour; and perishables that include milk, eggs, bread, refrigerated and frozen food, beer, and wine.
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