) to buy from hold.
Analyst Christina McGlone says she believes management is now in a position to execute on a plan to grow margins. In addition to a restructuring plan currently underway, McGlone thinks Smucker is evaluating its corporate overhead in an effort to improve efficiency. She notes Smucker has adopted Procter & Gamble's program (renamed Smucker's Quality Management) which analyzes and attempts to improve plant level operations by driving productivity.
Based on her discussions, McGlone expects Smucker to achieve 15% operating margin by fiscal 2006 (April). She's keeping her $2.36 fiscal 2004 earnings per share estimates. She also upped the $2.60 fiscal 2005 earnings per share estimate to $2.64; and raised the price target to $46.