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Flowers Foods Trading Probed

The SEC is looking into a swoon and recovery in its stock about a year ago.


Securities and Exchange Commission

is probing trading in the common shares of

Flowers Foods

(FLO) - Get Free Report

between December 2002 and January 2003.

The company said it doesn't believe it is the focus of the investigation but said it hasn't been informed of all the facts of the probe or who the focus is, according to an SEC filing.

In early December, Flowers' stock traded at about $23, before sinking 30% to $16.56 on Jan. 24. It jumped back to $23.50 by Jan. 31. Flowers announced the sale of its Mrs. Smith's Frozen Foods business to a private company for $240 million in cash on Jan. 30, 2003.

The stock is unchanged at $25 per share in premarket trading and remains near its 52-week high of $26.21.

The Thomasville, Ga.,-based company makes specialty breads and snack cakes and sells its products under various brand names through vending machines and 26 company-owned bakeries in 17 states. The company expects 2003 revenue of about $1 billion.