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Wall Street Takeaway: Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR), ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP), Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX)

Boston, MA 05/30/2014 (wallstreetpr) – Questions are being asked about whether Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR) made the right move with rival Safeway Inc. (NYSE:SWY). At some point Kroger was going to acquire Safeway but saw more risks than rewards in the acquisition thereby abandoning its interest. Safeway was eventually purchased by private equity firm Cerberus and its results under Cerberus leave a lot to be desired, literally.

With Safeway, analysts say, Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR) would have significantly improved its store base in the U.S. almost overnight. Additionally, the retailer would have injected the much-needed dose of efficiency in its operations with the acquisition of Safeway. Therefore, for analysts, Kroger missed a game-changing opportunity by avoiding Safeway.

Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR) earned 78 cents per share on revenue of $23.22 billion in the most recent quarter. Analysts on the average expected earnings per share of 72 cents on revenue of $23.14 billion. While earnings in the quarter increased from a year earlier, revenue was down 3.7 percent from a year earlier.

Analysts are of the opinion that ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) is set for long-term positive performance. The company’s strength can be seen in its expanding margin and the robust production. The company earned $1.81 per share in the most recent quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $$1.56. Earnings in the most recent quarter also improved significantly on a year-over-year basis.

ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) will pay a quarterly dividend of 69 cents per share on June 2. The dividend will capture shareholders of record as of May 23.

Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) won the fight against one of its activist shareholders to keep the roles of CEO and chairman under one leader. A majority of votes cast at the company’s shareholder meeting rejected the move to split the CEO and chairman positions. Currently, both positions are held by John Watson.

Activist investors are taking aims at companies to split the roles of CEO and board chairman under what they claim to be a step towards real transparency. However, such schemes have more often than not fallen by the wayside as can be seen in the case of JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), for instance. However, Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) caved in and agreed to split the roles, making it one of the major success stories in role-separate at the top corporate leadership.

Published by Lisa Ray

Lisa has a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Purdue University and 3 years of experience in the publishing field.



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