Central Garden & Pet Co (NASDAQ:CENT) saw a significant decrease in short interest during the month of August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 1,044,800 shares, a decrease of 7.2% from the July 31st total of 1,125,600 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 125,300 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 8.3 days. Approximately 10.2% of the shares of the company are sold short.

Shares of CENT stock traded down $0.09 during trading on Friday, hitting $28.45. The company had a trading volume of 21,264 shares, compared to its average volume of 155,152. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.67, a quick ratio of 3.17 and a current ratio of 4.84. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.61 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.97 and a beta of -0.04. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $25.90 and its 200 day moving average price is $27.52. Central Garden & Pet has a one year low of $22.40 and a one year high of $40.59.

Central Garden & Pet (NASDAQ:CENT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 1st. The company reported $0.80 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.86 by ($0.06). The company had revenue of $706.60 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $685.99 million. Central Garden & Pet had a net margin of 4.30% and a return on equity of 9.66%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 7.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.79 earnings per share. On average, research analysts anticipate that Central Garden & Pet will post 1.73 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

CENT has been the subject of several recent research reports. SunTrust Banks cut Central Garden & Pet from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $30.00 price target for the company. in a research note on Friday, August 2nd. BidaskClub upgraded Central Garden & Pet from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. Central Garden & Pet presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $34.33.

In other news, Director Thomas J. Colligan bought 4,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 6th. The shares were bought at an average price of $21.92 per share, with a total value of $87,680.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 9,079 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $199,011.68. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, Director Brooks Pennington III sold 1,644 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, June 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $26.24, for a total value of $43,138.56. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 42,023 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,102,683.52. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 12.60% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Virginia Retirement Systems ET AL bought a new stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet in the second quarter valued at approximately $660,000. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd boosted its stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 224.6% in the first quarter. Dynamic Technology Lab Private Ltd now owns 22,511 shares of the company’s stock valued at $575,000 after buying an additional 15,576 shares during the period. Wells Fargo & Company MN boosted its stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 9.4% in the second quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 1,351,453 shares of the company’s stock valued at $36,422,000 after buying an additional 115,701 shares during the period. Commerce Bank boosted its stake in shares of Central Garden & Pet by 22.9% in the first quarter. Commerce Bank now owns 8,834 shares of the company’s stock valued at $226,000 after buying an additional 1,644 shares during the period. Finally, North Star Investment Management Corp. lifted its stake in Central Garden & Pet by 8.9% during the second quarter. North Star Investment Management Corp. now owns 78,475 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,115,000 after purchasing an additional 6,425 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 22.51% 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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