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Why Shares of B&G Foods Inc. Went Sour

By Jeremy Bowman - Feb 13, 2014 at 2:05PM

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What: Shares of B&G Foods (BGS -1.07%) were headed to the bottom shelf today, falling as much as 11% after the company came up short on the bottom line in its fourth-quarter earnings report.

So what: The canned-foods maker said earnings per share came in at $0.39, below estimates at $0.44, making this the third straight quarter that the company has missed earnings expectations. Sales improved 21.8% to $211.5 million, ahead of estimates, but the gains were primarily due to recent acquisitions. Revenue in the base business was essentially flat for the quarter, increasing just 0.9%.

Now what: While the miss on the bottom line was disappointing, profits still improved from $0.32 a share a year ago, indicating that incremental sales from acquisitions appear to be trickling down. B&G is never going to be a growth star, but with savvy acquisitions, solid EBITDA growth, and a dividend yield of 4.6%, it could be a steady earner for your portfolio. Still, the company's payout yield is above 90%, indicating that dividends could be cut if cash flow falls. Keep your eye on that level going forward; B&G has just $4 million in cash on its balance sheet so it will need to generate continuing cash flow to cover those dividend payouts. 

Jeremy Bowman has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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