Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENT) Downgraded to Hold at SunTrust Banks

SunTrust Banks lowered shares of Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENT) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Friday morning, BenzingaRatingsTable reports.

Several other research firms have also recently weighed in on CENT. ValuEngine raised Central Garden & Pet from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a report on Monday, April 15th. BidaskClub upgraded Central Garden & Pet from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 24th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $40.50.

Shares of CENT traded down $6.67 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $23.43. The company had a trading volume of 341,381 shares, compared to its average volume of 53,380. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.69, a current ratio of 4.52 and a quick ratio of 2.79. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $28.21. Central Garden & Pet has a 52 week low of $23.03 and a 52 week high of $43.93. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.37 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.27 and a beta of -0.13.

Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENT) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 1st. The company reported $0.80 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.86 by ($0.06). The firm had revenue of $706.60 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $685.99 million. Central Garden & Pet had a net margin of 4.19% and a return on equity of 9.92%. Central Garden & Pet’s quarterly revenue was up 7.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.79 earnings per share. On average, research analysts anticipate that Central Garden & Pet will post 1.8 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, Director Mary Beth Springer sold 2,325 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, May 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.24, for a total value of $63,333.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 1,260 shares in the company, valued at approximately $34,322.40. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CEO George C. Roeth sold 3,595 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $26.53, for a total value of $95,375.35. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 10,962 shares of company stock valued at $288,224 over the last 90 days. 12.60% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 0.6% in the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 1,607,791 shares of the company’s stock worth $55,389,000 after purchasing an additional 9,027 shares in the last quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN increased its stake in Central Garden & Pet by 8.2% in the 1st quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 1,235,752 shares of the company’s stock worth $31,586,000 after buying an additional 93,334 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC increased its stake in Central Garden & Pet by 0.5% in the 4th quarter. FMR LLC now owns 968,821 shares of the company’s stock worth $33,376,000 after buying an additional 4,930 shares in the last quarter. Marshall Wace LLP increased its stake in Central Garden & Pet by 50.2% in the 1st quarter. Marshall Wace LLP now owns 289,030 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,388,000 after buying an additional 96,624 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Northern Trust Corp increased its stake in Central Garden & Pet by 7.5% in the 4th quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 147,185 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,070,000 after buying an additional 10,309 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 22.63% of the company’s stock.

Central Garden & Pet Company Profile

Central Garden & Pet Company, together with its subsidiaries, produces and distributes products for the lawn and garden, and pet supplies markets in the United States. It operates through two segments, Pet and Garden. The Pet segment supplies products for dogs and cats, including edible bones, edible and non-edible chews, dog and cat food and treats, toys, pet carriers, grooming supplies, and other accessories; and products for birds, small animals, and specialty pets, such as food, cages and habitats, toys, chews, and related accessories.

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Analyst Recommendations for Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENT)

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