Bunge (NYSE:BG) Raised to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Bunge (NYSE:BG) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report released on Tuesday morning, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Bunge Ltd. is an integrated global agribusiness and food company spanning the farm-to-consumer food chain. Bunge processes, produces, moves, distributes and markets food on five continents. “

Separately, ValuEngine cut shares of Bunge from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Saturday, May 4th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $73.33.

BG traded down $1.37 on Tuesday, hitting $56.55. 7,360 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 772,791. Bunge has a 12 month low of $47.26 and a 12 month high of $72.35. The company has a 50-day moving average of $56.79. The company has a quick ratio of 0.66, a current ratio of 1.40 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.76. The firm has a market capitalization of $7.97 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.82 and a beta of 0.86.

Bunge (NYSE:BG) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 31st. The basic materials company reported $1.52 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.32 by $1.20. Bunge had a net margin of 0.74% and a return on equity of 7.81%. The business had revenue of $10.10 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $12 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.10 earnings per share. Bunge’s revenue was down 16.9% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts expect that Bunge will post 2.74 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 3rd. Investors of record on Tuesday, August 20th will be issued a $0.50 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, August 19th. This represents a $2.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.54%. Bunge’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 73.53%.

In other Bunge news, CEO Gregory A. Heckman acquired 38,588 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 21st. The stock was acquired at an average price of $51.93 per share, for a total transaction of $2,003,874.84. Following the acquisition, the chief executive officer now directly owns 55,054 shares in the company, valued at $2,858,954.22. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director Grain Co Continental bought 160,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, May 24th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $51.00 per share, with a total value of $8,160,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 3,676,155 shares in the company, valued at approximately $187,483,905. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders purchased 212,588 shares of company stock valued at $10,882,275. 3.18% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in BG. Norges Bank acquired a new stake in Bunge during the 4th quarter valued at approximately $69,827,000. FIL Ltd increased its position in Bunge by 223.5% during the 1st quarter. FIL Ltd now owns 1,766,886 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $93,768,000 after purchasing an additional 1,220,696 shares during the period. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA increased its position in Bunge by 849.1% during the 1st quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 355,054 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $18,843,000 after purchasing an additional 317,644 shares during the period. Marathon Asset Management LLP increased its position in Bunge by 24.8% during the 1st quarter. Marathon Asset Management LLP now owns 1,591,965 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $84,486,000 after purchasing an additional 315,903 shares during the period. Finally, Tocqueville Asset Management L.P. acquired a new stake in Bunge during the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $15,070,000. 80.20% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Bunge

Bunge Limited operates as an agribusiness and food company worldwide. It operates in five segments: Agribusiness, Edible Oil Products, Milling Products, Sugar and Bioenergy, and Fertilizer. The Agribusiness segment purchases, stores, transports, processes, and sells agricultural commodities and commodity products, including oilseeds primarily soybeans, rapeseed, canola, and sunflower seeds, as well as grains primarily wheat and corn; and vegetable oils and protein meals.

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