Central Garden & Pet Co (NASDAQ:CENT) shares hit a new 52-week low during trading on Monday . The company traded as low as $26.36 and last traded at $26.60, with a volume of 36296 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $26.47.

A number of research analysts have recently commented on CENT shares. BidaskClub raised Central Garden & Pet from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Saturday, December 1st. ValuEngine raised Central Garden & Pet from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, January 22nd. TheStreet lowered Central Garden & Pet from a “b” rating to a “c+” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 27th. Finally, Argus lowered their price objective on Central Garden & Pet from $40.00 to $36.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, March 5th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $43.00.

The firm has a market cap of $1.53 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.90 and a beta of -0.03. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72, a current ratio of 5.10 and a quick ratio of 3.12.

Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENT) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 6th. The company reported $0.03 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.09 by ($0.06). Central Garden & Pet had a net margin of 4.44% and a return on equity of 11.19%. The business had revenue of $462.00 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $487.52 million. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $0.19 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.5% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, equities research analysts predict that Central Garden & Pet Co will post 1.8 EPS for the current year.

In related news, Director Brooks Pennington III sold 1,944 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, January 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.70, for a total transaction of $67,456.80. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 41,305 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,433,283.50. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Company insiders own 10.35% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in CENT. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 308.1% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 5,537,598 shares of the company’s stock valued at $187,466,000 after buying an additional 4,180,716 shares during the period. Atlanta Capital Management Co. L L C acquired a new stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet in the 4th quarter valued at $16,141,000. Earnest Partners LLC increased its stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 42.1% in the 3rd quarter. Earnest Partners LLC now owns 251,215 shares of the company’s stock valued at $9,054,000 after buying an additional 74,427 shares during the period. Marshall Wace LLP acquired a new stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet in the 3rd quarter valued at $2,664,000. Finally, Norges Bank acquired a new stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet in the 4th quarter valued at $2,076,000. 21.96% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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Central Garden & Pet Company Profile (NASDAQ:CENT)

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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