Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Flowers Foods, Inc. (NYSE:FLO) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Flowers Foods, Inc. is one of the largest producers and marketers of a full line of frozen and non-frozen bakery and dessert products in the United States. Flowers Foods consists of Flowers Bakeries and Mrs. Smith’s Bakeries. “

Several other research firms have also recently weighed in on FLO. BidaskClub upgraded Flowers Foods from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, June 29th. TheStreet upgraded Flowers Foods from a c+ rating to a b- rating in a research note on Thursday, May 18th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC restated a buy rating and set a $23.00 target price on shares of Flowers Foods in a research note on Friday, May 26th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $20.14.

Flowers Foods (NYSE:FLO) opened at 17.80 on Tuesday. The company has a market capitalization of $3.72 billion, a P/E ratio of 22.56 and a beta of 0.96. Flowers Foods has a one year low of $14.35 and a one year high of $21.00. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $17.76 and a 200-day moving average of $19.04.

Flowers Foods (NYSE:FLO) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, May 17th. The company reported $0.25 earnings per share for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $0.25. The firm had revenue of $1.19 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.21 billion. Flowers Foods had a return on equity of 15.39% and a net margin of 4.22%. The firm’s revenue was down 1.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.28 earnings per share. On average, analysts anticipate that Flowers Foods will post $0.87 earnings per share for the current year.

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The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 23rd. Shareholders of record on Friday, June 9th were given a dividend of $0.17 per share. This is a positive change from Flowers Foods’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.16. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, June 7th. This represents a $0.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.82%. Flowers Foods’s payout ratio is 87.18%.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Utah Retirement Systems raised its position in Flowers Foods by 0.3% in the first quarter. Utah Retirement Systems now owns 31,509 shares of the company’s stock valued at $612,000 after buying an additional 100 shares during the period. Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company LLC raised its position in Flowers Foods by 0.6% in the first quarter. Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company LLC now owns 31,681 shares of the company’s stock worth $615,000 after buying an additional 192 shares during the last quarter. Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management LLC raised its position in Flowers Foods by 2.5% in the first quarter. Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management LLC now owns 13,121 shares of the company’s stock worth $255,000 after buying an additional 326 shares during the last quarter. Oxbow Advisors LLC raised its position in Flowers Foods by 1.6% in the first quarter. Oxbow Advisors LLC now owns 23,440 shares of the company’s stock worth $455,000 after buying an additional 365 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Arcus Capital Partners LLC raised its position in Flowers Foods by 0.8% in the first quarter. Arcus Capital Partners LLC now owns 59,566 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,156,000 after buying an additional 481 shares during the last quarter. 66.52% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Flowers Foods Company Profile

Flowers Foods, Inc is a producer and marketer of packaged bakery products. The Company operates in two segments: direct-store-delivery segment (DSD Segment) and warehouse delivery segment (Warehouse Segment). The DSD segment produces fresh breads, buns, rolls, tortillas and snack cakes sold primarily by a network of independent distributors to retail and foodservice customers in the areas of the United States: East, South, Southwest, California, and select markets in the Midwest, Pacific Northwest, Nevada, and Colorado.

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Analyst Recommendations for Flowers Foods (NYSE:FLO)

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