Fred’s, Inc. (NASDAQ:FRED) shares shot up 6.4% during mid-day trading on Friday . The company traded as high as $4.98 and last traded at $4.96. 894,513 shares were traded during mid-day trading, a decline of 26% from the average session volume of 1,203,380 shares. The stock had previously closed at $4.66.

A number of brokerages have recently issued reports on FRED. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Fred’s from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, September 7th. Loop Capital started coverage on Fred’s in a research report on Thursday, August 24th. They set a “hold” rating and a $6.00 price target for the company. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $13.50.

The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.51, a current ratio of 1.90 and a quick ratio of 0.45.

Fred’s (NASDAQ:FRED) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, September 6th. The company reported ($0.15) EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of ($0.19) by $0.04. Fred’s had a negative return on equity of 4.02% and a negative net margin of 6.08%. The company had revenue of $507.80 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $504.90 million. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned ($0.18) earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 4.1% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts expect that Fred’s, Inc. will post -0.39 EPS for the current fiscal year.

A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Howard Hughes Medical Institute boosted its stake in Fred’s by 23.7% in the second quarter. Howard Hughes Medical Institute now owns 13,442 shares of the company’s stock valued at $124,000 after acquiring an additional 2,574 shares in the last quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio boosted its stake in shares of Fred’s by 6.3% during the second quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 13,594 shares of the company’s stock worth $125,000 after buying an additional 804 shares during the period. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System boosted its stake in shares of Fred’s by 2.1% during the second quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 14,600 shares of the company’s stock worth $135,000 after buying an additional 300 shares during the period. Paloma Partners Management Co acquired a new stake in Fred’s in the first quarter valued at about $136,000. Finally, Verition Fund Management LLC acquired a new stake in Fred’s in the second quarter valued at about $157,000.

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About Fred’s

Fred’s, Inc (Fred’s) is engaged in the sale of general merchandise through its retail discount stores and full service pharmacies. The Company sells general merchandise to its over 20 franchisees. The Company has approximately 660 retail stores, over 370 pharmacies, and approximately three specialty pharmacy facilities located in over 15 states mainly in the Southeastern United States.

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