New York-based investment firm Verum Partners LLC has announced that it bought a new stake in shares of PepsiCo, Inc. (NASDAQ:PEP) in Q4 2020, according to a recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund acquired 1,761 shares of the beverage giant’s stock, reportedly worth around $318,000. This news comes shortly after PepsiCo announced its Q4 earnings results on February 9th this year.
During Q4 2020, PepsiCo’s earnings per share (EPS) were $1.67, which beat analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.64 by $0.03. The company posted revenue of $28 billion for the quarter compared to analyst expectations of $26.82 billion. The beverage company had a robust performance due to strong demand for its snack products amid pandemic-induced lockdowns globally.
Industry analysts have responded positively to PEP’s financial performance over the last year despite concerns about economic uncertainty due to COVID-19 restrictions on business operations worldwide.
Morgan Stanley raised its price target for PepsiCo from $198 to $200 and labeled it an “overweight” stock in February following its strong Q4 earnings report while Argus increased their price objective from $195 to $206 in December last year.
However, some research organizations have rated PEP as “hold,” based on their analysis of the company’s fundamentals and market conditions. Citigroup thus initiated coverage on the food and beverage corporation in a research note released on February 16th this year and gave it a neutral rating with a price target of $180 per share while Barclays lowered its price objective for PEP from $197 to $187 but maintained an “overweight” rating for the company recently.
Overall, although opinions may differ amongst market observers regarding PEP’s future financial performance amid current economic turmoil that remains ongoing due to COVID-19 disruptions across various business sectors globally, it remains clear that PepsiCo has sustained a healthy performance amidst the various challenges presented. Further reporting will reveal how well PEP performs moving forward in these challenging times in the corporate world.
Investors and Hedge Funds Make Moves in PepsiCo Stock
PepsiCo, Inc. (NASDAQ: PEP) has been in the news lately due to a series of moves made by institutional investors and hedge funds. A number of these entities have either increased or reduced their stakes in the company in recent months. Paragon Wealth Strategies LLC, for one, recently added a new position in shares of PepsiCo during the third quarter valued at about $27,000. Heritage Wealth Management LLC also added to its PepsiCo position during the second quarter with a purchase valued at approximately $33,000. Meanwhile, Trifecta Capital Advisors LLC purchased a new position during the fourth quarter valued at around $39,000.
HBC Financial Services PLLC also got into the game by purchasing a new position in shares of PepsiCo during the second quarter worth approximately $41,000. Furthermore, Moisand Fitzgerald Tamayo LLC acquired an additional 165 shares of PepsiCo stock during the third quarter bringing their stake to 270 shares and their total value to $44,000.
Amid these developments, PepsiCo’s share prices opened at $182.50 on Tuesday which represents an impressive market cap of $251.36 billion. This is due in part to recent earnings reports showing strong growth indicators and healthy financials such as a current ratio of 0.80 and a greatly improved quick ratio of 0.61.
Investors and analysts are taking notice as well with Morgan Stanley giving it an “overweight” rating while raising its price target from $198.00 to $200.00 based on projected outlooks for increased revenue and expansion opportunities for the company.
However, not every analyst agrees with this bullish prediction since Citigroup initiated coverage on PepsiCo with a “neutral” rating set for a price objective of only $180 per share as they believe that market realities like inflation could potentially bring about significant risks that offset any potential gains for investors.
Included in its recent disclosures, PepsiCo also announced a quarterly dividend that was paid on March 31st to stockholders of record as of March 3rd. At $1.15 per share, this equates to an annualized dividend payout ratio of approximately 71.76%.
Recent insider trading activity included CEO Ramkumar Krishnan selling 16,827 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction totaling approximately $2,906,023. Meanwhile, Director Robert C. Pohlad sold 75,000 shares in a separate transaction valued at about $12,935,250.
Institutional investors and hedge funds own about 70.76% of the company’s outstanding stock; the remainder is owned by various retail investors who continue to buy and sell their equity as market conditions change.
All things considered, PepsiCo remains attractive for investment opportunities despite some potential market risks that may come with it simply because it’s one of the largest and most established companies averaging above-average earnings growth over time.