Consumer Stocks Rally for a Second Day as Kroger, Colgate Lead the Way

A rally in consumer stocks stretched into day two on Wednesday, Oct. 11, this time led by deal talks and analyst action in two of the sector's largest names. 

Colgate-Palmolive Co. (CL) increased 3% after SunTrust Robinson Humphrey raised its rating to buy from hold and boosted its price target to $85 from $65. Analyst William Chappell Jr. sees weakness over the past three quarters as an "anomaly." In the fourth quarter, Chappell expects the company to "cycle through these issues" and "embark on a path back to its target organic growth rates."

Kroger Co. (KR) jumped 3% on the announcement it was considering unloading its convenience store business. The company is exploring strategic alternatives for its 784 convenience stores stretched across 18 states. Goldman Sachs is advising the process.

Kroger and Colgate-Palmolive led consumer staples stocks. Walmart Stores Inc. (WMT) had driven gains a day earlier.

Other stocks on the rise on Wednesday included Unilever NV (UL) , PepsiCo Inc. (PEP) and Ambev SA (ABEV) . The Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR ETF (CL) increased 0.3%.

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