The Kroger Company
), one of the largest grocery retailers, recently announced a new
share buyback program, along with declaring its quarterly
Under the new share repurchase program, which replaced the
existing authorization, Kroger's board approved buyback worth $1
billion. The earlier program has nearly $2 million worth of
shares remaining to be repurchased.
Along with this, Kroger announced a quarterly dividend of 16.5
cents per share, payable on Jun 1, 2014 to shareholders of record
on May 15, 2014.
Kroger is an asset for yield-seeking investors. The company is
actively managing its capital, returning much of its free cash to
shareholders via share buybacks and dividends, apart from
deploying cash flows in opening stores and entry into new
markets. The company has paid $928 million to shareholders
through share repurchases and dividends in the last four
quarters. Since Jan 2000, the company has returned about $10
billion to stakeholders via share buyback program.
Recently, Kroger posted fourth-quarter fiscal 2013 earnings of 78
cents a share that surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 73
cents, aided by its Customer 1st strategy. However, quarterly
earnings fell 11% from 88 cents earned in the prior-year quarter.
Additionally, total sales (including fuel center sales) decreased
4% year-over-year to $23,222 million and also fell short of the
Zacks Consensus Estimate of $23,280 million.
Going forward, we believe that a predominant position among the
nation's largest grocery retailers enables Kroger to sustain
growth, expand store base and increase market share. It also
remains well positioned to deliver higher earnings, primarily
through strong super market sales growth.
Currently, Kroger's shares have a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Some other
stocks worth considering in the retail sector include
Spartan Stores Inc.
Diamond Foods, Inc.
The Hain Celestial Group, Inc.
). While Spartan Stores sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy),
Diamond Foods and Hain Celestial have a Zacks Rank #2.
DIAMOND FOODS (DMND): Free Stock Analysis
KROGER CO (KR): Free Stock Analysis Report
SPARTAN STORES (SPTN): Free Stock Analysis
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