Shares of Kroger Co. /zigman2/quotes/206215053/composite KR -0.39% rose 0.9% in morning trading, after Deutsche Bank analyst Paul Trussell backed away from his bearish rating on the grocery chain, citing growing optimism about the company's digital offerings. The upgrade comes as Trussell said he's incrementally more positive on the food retail sector, as online grocery has slightly outpaced his original growth projections, and with industry data showing that "at home" is gaining share of consumer stomachs. "Additionally, we are upgrading Kroger from sell to hold as we increase our ID forecast to reflect digital initiatives gaining traction," albeit a few years delayed relative to rivals such as Walmart Inc. /zigman2/quotes/207374728/composite WMT +0.44% . Trussell raised his stock price target for Kroger to $27 from $22. The stock rose 16.3% over the past three months, but has still slipped 2.4% year to date, In comparison, Walmart shares have run up 28.1% this year and the S&P 500 /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX +0.0073% has climbed 23.6%.