Hilltop Holdings Inc. Cuts Holdings in Altria Group Inc (MO)

Hilltop Holdings Inc. reduced its holdings in Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 23.1% during the 4th quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 30,338 shares of the company’s stock after selling 9,100 shares during the quarter. Hilltop Holdings Inc.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $1,499,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. Cullen Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in Altria Group by 1.9% during the 4th quarter. Cullen Capital Management LLC now owns 824,715 shares of the company’s stock worth $40,733,000 after buying an additional 15,230 shares in the last quarter. Intellectus Partners LLC lifted its holdings in Altria Group by 3.7% during the 4th quarter. Intellectus Partners LLC now owns 5,977 shares of the company’s stock worth $300,000 after buying an additional 211 shares in the last quarter. GYL Financial Synergies LLC acquired a new position in Altria Group during the 4th quarter worth $380,000. Arete Wealth Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in Altria Group by 14.9% during the 4th quarter. Arete Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 15,763 shares of the company’s stock worth $779,000 after buying an additional 2,043 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Susquehanna Fundamental Investments LLC acquired a new position in Altria Group during the 4th quarter worth $2,395,000. 64.34% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

MO has been the topic of several research reports. Citigroup set a $52.00 price objective on Altria Group and gave the stock a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, March 28th. TheStreet cut shares of Altria Group from a “b-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research report on Monday, January 7th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Altria Group from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 6th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Altria Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 21st. Finally, Morgan Stanley upped their target price on shares of Altria Group from $45.00 to $49.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a research report on Monday, April 15th. Three 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 an average price target of $62.53.

Shares of MO traded up $1.38 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $52.79. The stock had a trading volume of 7,716,443 shares, compared to its average volume of 11,621,782. The company has a quick ratio of 0.09, a current ratio of 0.20 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.80. Altria Group Inc has a 52 week low of $42.40 and a 52 week high of $66.04. The stock has a market cap of $102.45 billion, a P/E ratio of 13.23, a P/E/G ratio of 1.68 and a beta of 0.39.

Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 25th. The company reported $0.90 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.92 by ($0.02). Altria Group had a net margin of 27.45% and a return on equity of 49.05%. The firm had revenue of $4.39 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.60 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.95 EPS. Altria Group’s quarterly revenue was down 6.0% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts expect that Altria Group Inc will post 4.18 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, April 30th. Investors of record on Monday, March 25th will be given a $0.80 dividend. This represents a $3.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 6.06%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, March 22nd. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio is currently 80.20%.

In other Altria Group news, VP Ivan S. Feldman sold 6,802 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.18, for a total transaction of $348,126.36. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, Director Nabil Y. Sakkab bought 1,352 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, February 25th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $52.11 per share, with a total value of $70,452.72. Following the acquisition, the director now owns 39,660 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,066,682.60. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. 0.11% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

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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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