A Promising Tale Of Two Soaring Coke Stocks

Todd Moses
May 15, 2024

McDonald's is removing free drink refills, but Coca-Cola seems fine.

Inputs that matter: The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) stock is still moving upward regardless of the news.

  • However, there are two Coca-Cola stocks, one from the NYSE and the bottling company on NASDAQ.
  • Coca-Cola Consolidated (NASDAQ: COKE) is the largest single Coca-Cola bottler in the world, operating in 14 states and Washington, DC, to service over 60 million customers.
  • Coca-Cola Consolidated remains firmly under the control of the Harrison family, with J.B. Harrison III, great-grandson of its founder, serving as the current CEO and Chairman.
  • Harrison controls 86% of the voting stock shares, and The Coca-Cola Company currently owns roughly 35% of the common shares.

The opportunity: Swiss National Bank trimmed its position in Coca-Cola Consolidated, Inc. (NASDAQ: COKE) by 10.8% in the fourth quarter of 2023.

  • First Command Advisory Services Inc. purchased a $38,000 new stake in Coca-Cola Consolidated during the third quarter.
  • CWM LLC raised its position in Coca-Cola Consolidated by 22.2% in the 4th quarter.
  • Fifth Third Bancorp boosted its stake in shares of Coca-Cola Consolidated by 163.0% in the 3rd quarter.
  • Sunbelt Securities Inc. grew its position in shares of Coca-Cola Consolidated by 100.0% during the third quarter.

Zoom in: A number of consumer products emblematic of US culture have become universally recognized and regarded around the globe: Harley Davidson motorcycles, Marlboro cigarettes, Levi denim jeans, McDonald's hamburgers, and Coca-Cola soft drinks.

  • McDonald's customers are bidding a bitter farewell to free drink refills, one of the brand's latest casualties.
  • "McDonald's tends to be a leader in the industry. And often, other restaurants follow suit when they make big changes. McDonald's is brilliant about their costs," said Darren Tristano, CEO of consulting firm FoodserviceResults.

Between the lines: Coca-Cola and its other beverages are now sold in over 200 countries with an estimated 1.8 billion daily servings.

  • Aside from North Korea, Cuba, and Russia, Coca-Cola operates in every other country.
  • This allows Coke to generate predictable operating cash flow in developed markets while benefiting from more robust organic growth opportunities in emerging countries.
  • The company has 26 brands generating at least $1 billion worldwide sales.

Follow the money: One of Warren Buffett's favorite stocks is Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO). Coke is Berkshire's longest continuous holding (since 1988) and has a cost basis of just $3.2475 per share.

  • Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO) has raised its base annual dividend for 61 consecutive years and is currently paying $1.84 per share.
  • Geographic diversity is why Coca-Cola has been such a bubbling investment for the past 35 years.
  • Coca-Cola Consolidated (NASDAQ: COKE) posted modest sales growth for the Q1 selling period through late March.
  • Revenue rose 1% thanks to increasing sales volumes for sparkling and still drinks.
  • Coca-Cola Consolidated will likely announce a stock split in 2024.

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Read More

  1. https://finance.yahoo.com/quote/KO/
  2. https://finance.yahoo.com/quote/COKE/
  3. https://nypost.com/2024/05/14/lifestyle/mcdonalds-is-getting-rid-of-free-refills-and-more-fast-food-chains-may-follow/
  4. https://247wallst.com/investing/2024/05/13/heres-why-coca-cola-consolidated-will-likely-announce-a-stock-split-in-2024/
  5. https://www.fool.com/investing/2023/12/18/warren-buffett-gained-196-billion-only-4-stocks/
  6. https://www.marketbeat.com/instant-alerts/nasdaq-coke-sec-filing-2024-05-14/
  7. https://www.fool.com/investing/2024/05/10/why-coca-cola-consolidated-stock-jumped-this-week/