Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT) Shares Down 13.4% After Earnings Miss

Freshpet Inc (NASDAQ:FRPT) shares traded down 13.4% during trading on Tuesday after the company announced weaker than expected quarterly earnings. The stock traded as low as $35.95 and last traded at $36.71, 2,818,334 shares traded hands during trading. An increase of 780% from the average session volume of 320,250 shares. The stock had previously closed at $42.41.

The company reported ($0.16) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.08) by ($0.08). The firm had revenue of $60.10 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $59.59 million. Freshpet had a negative net margin of 2.57% and a negative return on equity of 4.46%. The business’s revenue was up 26.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted ($0.10) earnings per share.

FRPT has been the topic of several analyst reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. initiated coverage on Freshpet in a research report on Tuesday, July 30th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $46.00 target price on the stock. BidaskClub raised Freshpet from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 1st. DA Davidson initiated coverage on Freshpet in a research report on Wednesday, June 19th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $60.00 target price on the stock. Zacks Investment Research raised Freshpet from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $50.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, July 31st. Finally, SunTrust Banks lowered their price target on Freshpet to $45.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $44.29.

In related news, VP Stephen Macchiaverna sold 10,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, June 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.05, for a total transaction of $470,500.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 82,938 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,902,232.90. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, CFO Richard A. Kassar sold 55,509 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, June 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.78, for a total value of $2,652,220.02. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 184,463 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $8,813,642.14. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 174,104 shares of company stock valued at $8,335,030 in the last ninety days. Company insiders own 5.10% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in FRPT. FMR LLC boosted its position in shares of Freshpet by 749.2% in the 1st quarter. FMR LLC now owns 2,538,489 shares of the company’s stock valued at $107,353,000 after purchasing an additional 2,239,553 shares during the period. Eagle Asset Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Freshpet in the 2nd quarter valued at $26,907,000. Champlain Investment Partners LLC acquired a new position in shares of Freshpet in the 1st quarter valued at $21,016,000. Redwood Investments LLC acquired a new position in shares of Freshpet in the 2nd quarter valued at $9,884,000. Finally, Columbus Circle Investors acquired a new position in shares of Freshpet in the 1st quarter valued at $7,478,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 86.92% of the company’s stock.

The company has a current ratio of 1.08, a quick ratio of 0.72 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.07. The company has a market cap of $1.32 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of -244.73 and a beta of 1.11. The firm’s 50-day simple moving average is $45.47.

About Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT)

Freshpet, Inc manufactures and markets natural fresh products, refrigerated meals, and treats for dogs and cats in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The company sells its products under the Freshpet brand; and Dognation and Dog Joy labels through various classes of retail, including grocery, mass, club, pet specialty, and natural, as well as online.

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