BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA Increases Holdings in Sanderson Farms, Inc. (SAFM)

BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA boosted its stake in Sanderson Farms, Inc. (NASDAQ:SAFM) by 37.8% during the 1st quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The fund owned 6,442 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 1,768 shares during the period. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA’s holdings in Sanderson Farms were worth $849,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in the business. Suntrust Banks Inc. raised its position in Sanderson Farms by 4.0% in the fourth quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 2,244 shares of the company’s stock worth $222,000 after acquiring an additional 87 shares during the period. We Are One Seven LLC increased its stake in shares of Sanderson Farms by 5.3% in the fourth quarter. We Are One Seven LLC now owns 2,942 shares of the company’s stock worth $292,000 after purchasing an additional 149 shares in the last quarter. Arizona State Retirement System increased its stake in shares of Sanderson Farms by 1.1% in the fourth quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 14,425 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,432,000 after purchasing an additional 155 shares in the last quarter. Formidable Asset Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Sanderson Farms by 1.6% in the fourth quarter. Formidable Asset Management LLC now owns 10,773 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,070,000 after purchasing an additional 167 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Advisor Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of Sanderson Farms by 33.0% in the fourth quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 874 shares of the company’s stock worth $86,000 after purchasing an additional 217 shares in the last quarter. 99.52% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

SAFM has been the subject of several recent research reports. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Sanderson Farms from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Saturday, April 13th. Buckingham Research lifted their target price on shares of Sanderson Farms from $115.00 to $138.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 11th. Goldman Sachs Group upgraded shares of Sanderson Farms from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their target price for the stock from $81.00 to $131.00 in a research note on Tuesday, April 23rd. Stephens initiated coverage on shares of Sanderson Farms in a research note on Monday, March 4th. They issued an “equal weight” rating and a $130.00 target price for the company. Finally, Jefferies Financial Group reiterated a “sell” rating and issued a $77.00 target price on shares of Sanderson Farms in a research note on Sunday, February 17th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have given a hold rating, one has given a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $117.89.

In related news, Director John Bierbusse sold 677 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $113.94, for a total transaction of $77,137.38. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 12,675 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,444,189.50. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, insider Lampkin Butts sold 10,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, March 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $127.82, for a total transaction of $1,278,200.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 121,611 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $15,544,318.02. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 5.55% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Shares of NASDAQ:SAFM opened at $152.91 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $3.39 billion, a P/E ratio of 50.63 and a beta of 0.83. Sanderson Farms, Inc. has a 12 month low of $93.98 and a 12 month high of $154.82. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.04, a current ratio of 2.82 and a quick ratio of 1.48.

Sanderson Farms (NASDAQ:SAFM) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, February 26th. The company reported ($0.82) EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of ($1.82) by $1.00. The company had revenue of $743.40 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $705.25 million. Sanderson Farms had a negative net margin of 0.24% and a negative return on equity of 0.04%. Sanderson Farms’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $2.24 earnings per share. As a group, equities research analysts anticipate that Sanderson Farms, Inc. will post 2.69 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, May 21st. Investors of record on Tuesday, May 7th will be paid a dividend of $0.32 per share. The ex-dividend date is Monday, May 6th. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.84%. Sanderson Farms’s dividend payout ratio is currently 42.38%.

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About Sanderson Farms

Sanderson Farms, Inc, an integrated poultry processing company, produces, processes, markets, and distributes fresh, frozen, and prepared chicken products in the United States. The company sells ice-packed, chill-packed, bulk-packed, and frozen chicken primarily under the Sanderson Farms brand name to retailers, distributors, and casual dining operators in the southeastern, southwestern, northeastern, and western United States, as well as to customers who resell frozen chicken into export markets.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Sanderson Farms (NASDAQ:SAFM)

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