Sanderson Farms, Inc. (NASDAQ:SAFM) Short Interest Update

Sanderson Farms, Inc. (NASDAQ:SAFM) saw a large drop in short interest during the month of July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 1,992,500 shares, a drop of 6.9% from the June 30th total of 2,141,200 shares. Approximately 10.1% of the shares of the company are short sold. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 392,300 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 5.1 days.

SAFM has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. TheStreet raised Sanderson Farms from a “c+” rating to a “b” rating in a report on Friday, June 7th. Cleveland Research raised Sanderson Farms from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 22nd. Barclays set a $145.00 target price on Sanderson Farms and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, May 31st. BidaskClub raised Sanderson Farms from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group raised Sanderson Farms from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and increased their target price for the stock from $81.00 to $131.00 in a report on Tuesday, April 23rd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating, four have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $126.00.

Shares of NASDAQ SAFM opened at $143.40 on Friday. Sanderson Farms 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 0.07, a current ratio of 3.42 and a quick ratio of 1.72. The stock’s 50 day simple moving average is $135.94 and its 200 day simple moving average is $134.90.

Sanderson Farms (NASDAQ:SAFM) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, May 30th. The company reported $1.83 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.77 by $0.06. The business had revenue of $845.23 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $846.70 million. Sanderson Farms had a negative return on equity of 0.13% and a negative net margin of 0.28%. The business’s revenue was up 3.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $1.84 EPS. Sell-side analysts expect that Sanderson Farms will post 6.22 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, August 13th. Investors of record on Tuesday, July 30th were issued a $0.32 dividend. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.89%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, July 29th. Sanderson Farms’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 42.38%.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in SAFM. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its holdings in shares of Sanderson Farms by 12.4% in the 4th quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,693,590 shares of the company’s stock worth $168,157,000 after purchasing an additional 186,527 shares during the last quarter. Bank of America Corp DE increased its position in Sanderson Farms by 241.8% in the 4th quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 62,179 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,173,000 after acquiring an additional 43,990 shares during the period. Legal & General Group Plc increased its position in Sanderson Farms by 9.3% in the 4th quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 27,583 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,738,000 after acquiring an additional 2,352 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its position in Sanderson Farms by 8.4% in the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 236,930 shares of the company’s stock valued at $23,524,000 after acquiring an additional 18,291 shares during the period. Finally, Virtu Financial LLC acquired a new stake in Sanderson Farms in the 1st quarter valued at approximately $539,000. 99.52% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Sanderson Farms Company Profile

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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