Bunge (NYSE:BG) Upgraded to “Buy” at Zacks Investment Research

Bunge (NYSE:BG) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report issued on Monday, Zacks.com reports. The brokerage currently has a $64.00 price objective on the basic materials company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s price target indicates a potential upside of 15.73% from the company’s current price.

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. “

A number of other equities research analysts also recently commented on BG. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Bunge from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Saturday, May 4th. TheStreet upgraded shares of Bunge from a “c+” rating to a “b” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 31st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $71.50.

Shares of BG traded down $1.89 during mid-day trading on Monday, hitting $55.30. 1,263,250 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,538,461. Bunge has a fifty-two week low of $47.26 and a fifty-two week high of $72.35. The stock has a market cap of $7.91 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.33 and a beta of 0.88. The company has a 50 day simple moving average of $56.79. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82, a current ratio of 1.49 and a quick ratio of 0.66.

Bunge (NYSE:BG) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 31st. The basic materials company reported $1.52 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.32 by $1.20. The firm had revenue of $10.10 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $12 billion. Bunge had a net margin of 1.30% and a return on equity of 11.39%. The firm’s revenue was down 16.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.10 earnings per share. On average, analysts expect that Bunge will post 3.03 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Bunge news, Director Grain Co Continental acquired 160,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 24th. The stock was acquired at an average price 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 $187,483,905. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Director Henry Ward Iv Winship acquired 4,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, May 22nd. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $51.40 per share, with a total value of $205,600.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 6,086 shares in the company, valued at $312,820.40. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders bought a total of 212,588 shares of company stock valued at $10,882,275 in the last three months. Insiders own 3.18% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in BG. FMR LLC grew its position in Bunge by 8.9% in the 4th quarter. FMR LLC now owns 2,959,161 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $158,138,000 after purchasing an additional 243,072 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp grew its position in Bunge by 2.5% in the 1st quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 2,215,302 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $117,566,000 after purchasing an additional 54,324 shares during the last quarter. Marathon Asset Management LLP grew its position in Bunge by 17.5% in the 2nd quarter. Marathon Asset Management LLP now owns 1,870,751 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $104,211,000 after purchasing an additional 278,786 shares during the last quarter. FIL Ltd grew its position in Bunge by 223.5% in the 1st quarter. FIL Ltd now owns 1,766,886 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $93,768,000 after purchasing an additional 1,220,696 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Norges Bank bought a new position in Bunge in the 4th quarter worth about $69,827,000. 80.10% 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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