Zacks Investment Research Lowers Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENTA) to Strong Sell

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENTA) from a hold rating to a strong sell rating in a report published on Thursday morning, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Central Garden & Pet Company is a leading innovator, marketer and producer of quality branded products for the lawn & garden and pet supplies markets. Committed to new product innovation, their products are sold to specialty independent and mass retailers. Participating categories in Lawn & Garden include: Grass seed and the brands PENNINGTON, and THE REBELS; wild bird feed and the brand PENNINGTON; weed and insect control and the brands AMDRO, SEVIN, IRONITE and OVER-N-OUT; and decorative outdoor patio products under the PENNINGTON brand. Participating categories in Pet include: Animal health and the brands ADAMS and ZODIAC; aquatics and reptile and the brands AQUEON, CORALIFE, SEGREST and ZILLA; bird & small animal and the brands KAYTEE, Forti-Diet and CRITTER TRAIL; dog & cat and the brands TFH, NYLABONE, FOUR PAWS, IMS, CADET, DMC, K&H Pet Products, PINNACLE and AVODERM; and equine and the brands FARNAM, HORSE HEALTH and VITAFLEX. “

CENTA has been the subject of a number of other research reports. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Central Garden & Pet from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, September 12th. Bank of America cut shares of Central Garden & Pet from a buy rating to a neutral rating in a research note on Wednesday. KeyCorp cut their target price on shares of Central Garden & Pet from $36.00 to $32.00 and set an overweight rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday. Monness Crespi & Hardt reiterated a buy rating and issued a $36.00 target price (down previously from $44.00) on shares of Central Garden & Pet in a research note on Friday, August 2nd. Finally, ValuEngine cut shares of Central Garden & Pet from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Friday, November 1st. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. Central Garden & Pet has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $33.00.

Shares of CENTA opened at $25.01 on Thursday. The stock has a market cap of $1.42 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.41, a P/E/G ratio of 2.46 and a beta of 0.08. The company has a quick ratio of 3.17, a current ratio of 4.69 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.70. Central Garden & Pet has a 12 month low of $20.50 and a 12 month high of $36.92. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $28.22 and a two-hundred day moving average price of $26.06.

Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENTA) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, November 26th. The company reported $0.04 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.17 by ($0.13). The business had revenue of $540.74 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $518.20 million. Central Garden & Pet had a return on equity of 9.26% and a net margin of 3.89%. Equities research analysts expect that Central Garden & Pet will post 1.61 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co NY grew its holdings in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 4.4% in the 3rd quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co NY now owns 13,660 shares of the company’s stock valued at $379,000 after buying an additional 577 shares during the period. Millennium Management LLC grew its holdings in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 2,457.1% in the 3rd quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 255,097 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,072,000 after buying an additional 245,121 shares during the period. Man Group plc acquired a new position in shares of Central Garden & Pet in the 3rd quarter valued at $287,000. Zebra Capital Management LLC grew its holdings in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 40.5% in the 3rd quarter. Zebra Capital Management LLC now owns 26,431 shares of the company’s stock valued at $733,000 after buying an additional 7,622 shares during the period. Finally, Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio grew its holdings in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 2,183.5% in the 3rd quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 50,512 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,400,000 after buying an additional 48,300 shares during the period. 64.07% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Central Garden & Pet Company Profile

Central Garden & Pet Company, together with its subsidiaries, produces and distributes products for the lawn and garden, and pet supplies markets in the United States. It operates through two segments, Pet and Garden. The Pet segment supplies products for dogs and cats, including edible bones, edible and non-edible chews, dog and cat food and treats, toys, pet carriers, grooming supplies, and other accessories; and products for birds, small animals, and specialty pets, such as food, cages and habitats, toys, chews, and related accessories.

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