First Manhattan Co. Decreases Position in Whole Foods Market, Inc. (NASDAQ:WFM)

First Manhattan Co. lowered its position in Whole Foods Market, Inc. (NASDAQ:WFM) by 4.1% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 9,400 shares of the company’s stock after selling 400 shares during the period. First Manhattan Co.’s holdings in Whole Foods Market were worth $395,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of WFM. Advisory Services Network LLC bought a new stake in Whole Foods Market during the first quarter worth about $105,000. Westside Investment Management Inc. increased its stake in Whole Foods Market by 406.4% in the first quarter. Westside Investment Management Inc. now owns 4,137 shares of the company’s stock worth $125,000 after buying an additional 3,320 shares during the period. Winslow Evans & Crocker Inc. increased its stake in Whole Foods Market by 169.1% in the second quarter. Winslow Evans & Crocker Inc. now owns 3,428 shares of the company’s stock worth $132,000 after buying an additional 2,154 shares during the period. Pacer Advisors Inc. increased its stake in Whole Foods Market by 3.4% in the first quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 6,212 shares of the company’s stock worth $185,000 after buying an additional 207 shares during the period. Finally, Baldwin Brothers Inc. MA bought a new stake in Whole Foods Market during the second quarter worth about $190,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 86.33% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Whole Foods Market, Inc. (NASDAQ:WFM) remained flat at $41.73 during midday trading on Friday. The company had a trading volume of 2,316,383 shares. The stock has a market cap of $13.36 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 34.37 and a beta of 0.82. Whole Foods Market, Inc. has a one year low of $27.67 and a one year high of $43.84. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $41.85 and its 200-day moving average price is $35.72.

Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFM) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, July 26th. The company reported $0.36 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.33 by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $3.73 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.72 billion. Whole Foods Market had a return on equity of 13.26% and a net margin of 2.44%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up .6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.37 EPS. On average, equities analysts predict that Whole Foods Market, Inc. will post $1.33 earnings per share for the current year.

Whole Foods Market announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share repurchase program on Wednesday, May 10th that authorizes the company to repurchase $1.25 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to repurchase up to 10.8% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

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WFM has been the subject of several recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Whole Foods Market from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, May 12th. Wells Fargo & Company upgraded shares of Whole Foods Market from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $42.00 target price for the company in a research note on Thursday, May 11th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Whole Foods Market from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, June 13th. Vetr upgraded shares of Whole Foods Market from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $42.27 target price for the company in a research note on Monday, June 19th. Finally, Tigress Financial downgraded shares of Whole Foods Market from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Monday, August 7th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nineteen have issued a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $38.06.

In other news, insider Angela Lorenzen sold 1,431 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $36.34, for a total transaction of $52,002.54. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 1,131 shares in the company, valued at approximately $41,100.54. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 1.30% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Whole Foods Market Company Profile

Whole Foods Market, Inc is engaged in the business of natural and organic foods supermarket. The Company operates approximately 456 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. Its stores have an average size of approximately 39,000 square feet, and are supported by its distribution centers, bake house facilities, commissary kitchens, seafood-processing facilities, a produce procurement center, and a specialty coffee and tea procurement and roasting operation, among others.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFM)

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