Bank of America Bumps up Price Target, Estimates for Heinz (HNZ)

Bank of America Bumps up Price Target, Estimates for Heinz (HNZ)

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Condiments maker H.J. Heinz Company (HNZ) on Friday received some positive commentary from analysts at Bank of America.

The firm maintained its “Neutral” rating on HNZ but lifted its price target from $58 to $59. That new target suggests a small upside to the stock’s Wednesday closing price of $57.62.

A Bank of America analyst commented, “Key takeaways: 1) HNZ expects a significant ramp up in sales, particularly volumes, over F2H13 due to increased marketing and innovation.” Continuing, “We are raising our F13 EPS estimate from $3.47 to $3.53, primarily due to a lower tax rate which is down from 22% to 20% ($0.09 p/s). We are lowering our operating profit forecast from $1.734bn to $1.713bn due to lower margins in NACP and Rest of World (ROW). We are forecasting 4.1% organic sales growth with a mix of 2.2% vol/mix and 1.9% pricing.”

Heinz shares were mostly flat in premarket trading Friday. The stock has risen about 6.6% year-to-date.

The Bottom Line
We have been recommending shares of H.J. Heinz (HNZ) since Jan.24, 2009, when the stock was trading at $35.06. The company has a 3.58% dividend yield, based on Wednesday’s closing stock price of $57.62.

H.J. Heinz Company (HNZ) is a “Recommended” dividend stock, holding a Dividend.com DARS™ Rating of 3.6 out of 5 stars.

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks, as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here.

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