Stocks: Green Plains Inc (GPRE) Lowered to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Stocks: Green Plains Inc (GPRE) Lowered to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Green Plains Inc (NASDAQ:GPRE) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Green Plains Inc. is vertically integrated producer, marketer and distributer of ethanol. The company operates through four segments: Ethanol Production, Corn Oil Production, Agribusiness, and Marketing and Distribution. It produces ethanol and co-products, such as wet, modified wet or dried distillers grains, as well as extracts non-edible corn oil. The company is also involved in buying and selling bulk grain primarily corn and soybeans. Green Plains Inc., formerly known as Green Plains Renewable Energy, Inc., is headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska. “

GPRE has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Roth Capital set a $33.00 price objective on shares of Green Plains and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Wednesday, February 8th. Credit Suisse Group AG decreased their price objective on shares of Green Plains from $31.00 to $29.00 and set an outperform rating for the company in a report on Wednesday, March 29th. BMO Capital Markets restated an outperform rating and set a $30.00 price objective on shares of Green Plains in a report on Wednesday, April 26th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC restated a buy rating and set a $32.00 price objective on shares of Green Plains in a report on Thursday, February 9th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $30.83.

Shares of Green Plains (NASDAQ:GPRE) traded down 2.273% during mid-day trading on Thursday, reaching $24.725. 180,110 shares of the company were exchanged. Green Plains has a 12 month low of $14.74 and a 12 month high of $29.85. The stock has a market capitalization of $989.25 million, a P/E ratio of 30.412 and a beta of 1.33. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $23.82 and a 200 day moving average price of $24.78.

Green Plains (NASDAQ:GPRE) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Monday, May 1st. The specialty chemicals company reported ($0.09) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.18) by $0.09. The firm had revenue of $887.70 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $920.45 million. Green Plains had a net margin of 0.31% and a return on equity of 1.12%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 18.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned ($0.63) earnings per share. Equities research analysts anticipate that Green Plains will post $1.43 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 16th. Investors of record on Friday, May 26th will be issued a dividend of $0.12 per share. This represents a $0.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.90%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, May 24th. Green Plains’s dividend payout ratio is currently 192.00%.

In related news, Director James D. Anderson purchased 4,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 9th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $22.06 per share, with a total value of $88,240.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now owns 68,255 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,505,705.30. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director Brian Peterson sold 78,650 shares of Green Plains stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.31, for a total transaction of $1,990,631.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 100,755 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,550,109.05. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 7.60% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in GPRE. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. raised its position in shares of Green Plains by 3.0% in the fourth quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 3,752 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $105,000 after buying an additional 110 shares during the last quarter. Nelson Van Denburg & Campbell Wealth Management Group LLC bought a new position in shares of Green Plains during the third quarter worth $139,000. Capstone Investment Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of Green Plains during the fourth quarter worth $220,000. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan raised its position in shares of Green Plains by 1.5% in the third quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan now owns 8,030 shares of the specialty chemicals company’s stock worth $210,000 after buying an additional 120 shares during the last quarter. Finally, UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. bought a new position in shares of Green Plains during the first quarter worth $204,000. 97.67% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Green Plains Company Profile

Green Plains Inc is an ethanol producer. The Company owns and operates assets throughout the ethanol value chain, including upstream, with grain handling and storage through its ethanol production facilities, and downstream, with marketing and distribution services. It operates through four segments: Ethanol Production, Agribusiness and Energy Services, Food and Food Ingredients, and Partnership.

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