Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) Shares Sold by Burney Co.

Burney Co. trimmed its position in Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 3.4% in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 17,860 shares of the company’s stock after selling 636 shares during the period. Burney Co.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $882,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other large investors have also recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Capital International Investors boosted its stake in Altria Group by 698.6% in the third quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 31,992,124 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,929,445,000 after acquiring an additional 27,986,154 shares during the period. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund boosted its stake in Altria Group by 4,426.0% in the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 23,150,081 shares of the company’s stock valued at $469,000 after acquiring an additional 22,638,593 shares during the period. Bank of New York Mellon Corp boosted its stake in Altria Group by 82,381.0% in the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 22,356,466 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,348,318,000 after acquiring an additional 22,329,361 shares during the period. Morgan Stanley boosted its stake in Altria Group by 20.0% in the third quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 19,755,741 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,191,471,000 after acquiring an additional 3,293,877 shares during the period. Finally, Independent Franchise Partners LLP boosted its stake in Altria Group by 19.7% in the third quarter. Independent Franchise Partners LLP now owns 14,933,862 shares of the company’s stock valued at $900,661,000 after acquiring an additional 2,460,564 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 64.28% of the company’s stock.

In related news, VP Ivan S. Feldman sold 6,802 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.18, for a total transaction of $348,126.36. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Nabil Y. Sakkab bought 1,032 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, February 21st. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $50.42 per share, for a total transaction of $52,033.44. Following the acquisition, the director now owns 38,308 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,931,489.36. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 0.11% of the stock is owned by insiders.

MO has been the subject of a number of research reports. Citigroup set a $52.00 target price on Altria Group and gave the company a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 28th. TheStreet downgraded Altria Group from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research note on Monday, January 7th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, February 6th. ValuEngine upgraded Altria Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, March 21st. Finally, Deutsche Bank decreased their target price on Altria Group from $62.00 to $55.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research note on Friday, December 21st. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $63.11.

Shares of MO traded up $0.38 during mid-day trading on Monday, reaching $56.94. 4,445,168 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 11,771,276. The stock has a market cap of $104.82 billion, a PE ratio of 14.27, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.60 and a beta of 0.39. The company has a current ratio of 0.20, a quick ratio of 0.09 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.80. Altria Group Inc has a 12 month low of $42.40 and a 12 month high of $66.04.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, January 31st. The company reported $0.95 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.95. Altria Group had a return on equity of 49.05% and a net margin of 27.45%. The company had revenue of $4.79 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $4.81 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.91 earnings per share. As a group, analysts forecast that Altria Group Inc will post 4.2 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, April 30th. Investors of record on Monday, March 25th will be issued a dividend of $0.80 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, March 22nd. This represents a $3.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 5.62%. Altria Group’s payout ratio is 80.20%.

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About Altria Group

Altria Group, Inc, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, smokeless products, and wine in the United States. It offers cigarettes primarily under the Marlboro brand; cigars principally under the Black & Mild brand; and moist smokeless tobacco products under the Copenhagen, Skoal, Red Seal, and Husky brands.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Altria Group (NYSE:MO)

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