Short Interest in Hormel Foods Corp (NYSE:HRL) Drops By 5.9%

Hormel Foods Corp (NYSE:HRL) was the target of a significant decrease in short interest in May. As of May 15th, there was short interest totalling 28,870,000 shares, a decrease of 5.9% from the April 30th total of 30,680,000 shares. Approximately 10.3% of the shares of the company are short sold. Based on an average daily volume of 3,180,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 9.1 days.

Several equities analysts recently commented on the company. Barclays raised their target price on Hormel Foods from $40.00 to $44.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, March 31st. Cfra lifted their price objective on Hormel Foods from $38.00 to $45.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday. Goldman Sachs Group upgraded shares of Hormel Foods from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and boosted their target price for the company from $35.00 to $45.00 in a research note on Thursday, March 26th. Finally, Piper Sandler cut shares of Hormel Foods from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $47.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, April 28th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $43.60.

In related news, SVP Steven J. Lykken sold 10,557 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, April 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.64, for a total value of $502,935.48. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 34,714 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,653,774.96. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, VP Lori J. Marco sold 10,373 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, April 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.50, for a total transaction of $492,717.50. Following the transaction, the vice president now owns 64,254 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,052,065. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 111,380 shares of company stock valued at $5,391,665 over the last 90 days. 1.15% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of HRL. Capital Research Global Investors boosted its holdings in Hormel Foods by 1.1% in the fourth quarter. Capital Research Global Investors now owns 14,176,610 shares of the company’s stock valued at $639,507,000 after acquiring an additional 159,369 shares during the last quarter. Capital International Investors lifted its position in Hormel Foods by 22.7% during the 1st quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 13,522,046 shares of the company’s stock valued at $630,669,000 after purchasing an additional 2,505,997 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of Hormel Foods by 1.7% in the 1st quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 4,626,703 shares of the company’s stock valued at $215,712,000 after purchasing an additional 75,361 shares during the last quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. grew its position in shares of Hormel Foods by 4.6% during the 4th quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 4,453,787 shares of the company’s stock worth $200,910,000 after buying an additional 194,224 shares during the period. Finally, APG Asset Management N.V. raised its stake in shares of Hormel Foods by 165.5% during the first quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 4,216,152 shares of the company’s stock worth $168,068,000 after buying an additional 2,627,997 shares during the last quarter. 44.18% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

NYSE:HRL traded up $0.92 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $46.93. 2,458,502 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 2,702,442. The company has a quick ratio of 1.31, a current ratio of 1.70 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.01. The stock has a market cap of $24.74 billion, a PE ratio of 27.44, a PEG ratio of 4.32 and a beta of -0.06. Hormel Foods has a 12 month low of $37.00 and a 12 month high of $51.53. The company has a fifty day moving average of $47.78 and a 200 day moving average of $45.56.

Hormel Foods (NYSE:HRL) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, May 21st. The company reported $0.42 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.43 by ($0.01). The company had revenue of $2.42 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.40 billion. Hormel Foods had a return on equity of 15.38% and a net margin of 9.64%. Hormel Foods’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.46 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Hormel Foods will post 1.74 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, August 17th. Stockholders of record on Monday, July 13th will be paid a $0.2325 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, July 10th. This represents a $0.93 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.98%. Hormel Foods’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 53.45%.

About Hormel Foods

Hormel Foods Corporation produces and markets various meat and food products in the United States and internationally. The company operates through five segments: Grocery Products, Refrigerated Foods, Jennie-O Turkey Store, and International & Other. It offers various perishable meat products, including fresh meats, frozen items, refrigerated meal solutions, sausages, hams, guacamoles, and bacons; and shelf-stable products, such as canned luncheon meats, peanut butters, chilies, shelf-stable microwaveable meals, hashes, stews, meat spreads, flour and corn tortillas, salsas, tortilla chips, and other products.

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