Hormel Foods Corporation (HRL) Shares Tick Up after Upgrade at Zacks Investment Research

Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL) shares rose in value on Tuesday February 14 on slower trade volume than normal after a number of analysts weighed in on the investing value of the stock with a upgraded rating.

Meanwhile U.S. stocks opened slightly lower on Tuesday. The main three benchmarks retreated after touching the latest in a series of record highs on Monday, with the S&P 500 index SPX, -0.09% down two points, or 0.1%, to 2,326.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.02% fell 34 points, or 0.2%, to 20,381. The Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, -0.13% shed eight points, or 0.1%, to 5,756.

Analysts at Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL) from Hold to Strong-Buy today. With a rating of Strong-Buy on the stock, Hormel Foods Corporation has a 52-week high of $45.72. As a means of comparison, a number of other analysts have spoken on the company recently, and the company has earned a consensus one-year price target of $39.73, higher than the opening price of $37.18, a difference of 10.65 percent. Stock prices often move to the upside on recommendations and new price targets of professional analysts.

Yesterday Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL) shares last traded at $37.29, which is a jump of $0.04 from the previous closing price. Opening at $37.18, they varied from $37.07 and $37.29 throughout the day.

Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL) now has a market cap of 19.72B.

Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL) Average Daily Trading Volume

141,547 shares crossed the trading desk yesterday, 97 percent lower than normal, out of a total float 268,329,000. lower than normal. Look for trading volume to pick up in the coming days as momentum traders often use upticks in trading volume to identify heavy volume accumulation or distribution by institutional investors.

As with all potential breakouts, investors look for volume to be at least 40%-50% higher than normal on the breakout to show that fund managers and other professional investors are jumping in.

Institutional sponsorship is defined by ownership of a stock by mutual funds, banks, pension funds and other large institutions.

Institutional investors such as these have substantial teams of analysts researching thousands of stocks. Thus, watching their interests is a good way to ensure you are buying the right stocks.

Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL) Moving Averages

A moving average can also act as support or resistance. In an uptrend a 50-day, 100-day or 200-day moving average may act as a support level, as shown in the figure below.

This is because the average acts like a floor (support), so the price bounces up off of it.

In a downtrend a moving average may act as resistance; like a ceiling, the price hits it and then starts to drop again.

By tracking the activity of these professional investors—and the moving averages they affect—it allows for traders to make more effective decisions on trades.

Trades for Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL) have ranged from $33.18 – 45.72, and the stock now has a 50-day MA of $35.98 and 200-day MA of $36.52. Today’s last price is 18.44%% lower than the 52 week high of $45.72.

Earnings growth is an important factor to look at when buying stocks and investors look for companies that have increased their earnings at least 25% or more for 3 consecutive years.

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