General Mills Inc. (GIS): Today's Featured Food & Beverage Laggard

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

General Mills ( GIS) pushed the Food & Beverage industry lower today making it today's featured Food & Beverage laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.2%. By the end of trading, General Mills fell 51 cents (-1.2%) to $40.48 on average volume. Throughout the day, 3.8 million shares of General Mills exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.9 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $40.48-$41.03 after having opened the day at $40.93 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $40.99. Other companies within the Food & Beverage industry that declined today were: Tofutti Brands ( TOF), down 11.7%, Limoneira ( LMNR), down 4.1%, Reeds ( REED), down 4%, and Cosan ( CZZ), down 3.6%.
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General Mills, Inc. manufactures and markets branded consumer foods worldwide. The company also supplies branded and unbranded food products to the foodservice and commercial baking industries. General Mills has a market cap of $26.33 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.9, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 1.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate General Mills a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and five rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates General Mills as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, attractive valuation levels, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated.

On the positive front, Seaboard Corporation ( SEB), up 7.3%, Alico ( ALCO), up 5.7%, Tootsie Roll Industries Incorporated ( TR), up 5.2%, and Adecoagro ( AGRO), up 4.8%, were all gainers within the food & beverage industry with Dean Foods Company ( DF) being today's featured food & beverage industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the food & beverage industry could consider PowerShares Dynamic Food & Beverage ( PBJ) while those bearish on the food & beverage industry could consider PowerShares DB Agriculture Sht ETN ( ADZ).

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