Whittier Trust Co. lowered its stake in Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO) by 9.9% in the 1st quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The fund owned 136,807 shares of the company’s stock after selling 15,067 shares during the period. Whittier Trust Co.’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $7,857,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 4,426.0% during the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 23,150,081 shares of the company’s stock valued at $469,000 after buying an additional 22,638,593 shares during the period. FMR LLC boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 13.9% during the fourth quarter. FMR LLC now owns 46,826,474 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,312,760,000 after buying an additional 5,719,727 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 8.3% during the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 24,928,440 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,229,235,000 after buying an additional 1,908,626 shares during the period. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 323.6% during the fourth quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. now owns 1,825,701 shares of the company’s stock valued at $90,171,000 after buying an additional 1,394,730 shares during the period. Finally, Assenagon Asset Management S.A. boosted its position in shares of Altria Group by 22,510.6% during the fourth quarter. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. now owns 1,388,520 shares of the company’s stock valued at $68,579,000 after buying an additional 1,382,379 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 64.04% of the company’s stock.
Several research analysts have issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Altria Group from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, April 8th. ValuEngine upgraded Altria Group from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. Bank of America boosted their target price on Altria Group from $56.00 to $66.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, March 20th. TheStreet upgraded Altria Group from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research report on Friday, March 29th. Finally, Morgan Stanley boosted their target price on Altria Group from $45.00 to $49.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a research report on Monday, April 15th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $62.53.
Shares of Altria Group stock traded down $0.54 on Friday, hitting $52.28. 894,911 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 10,774,444. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.92, a quick ratio of 0.39 and a current ratio of 0.62. Altria Group Inc has a 52 week low of $42.40 and a 52 week high of $66.04. The company has a market capitalization of $98.50 billion, a PE ratio of 13.10, a P/E/G ratio of 1.62 and a beta of 0.35.
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 25th. The company reported $0.90 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.92 by ($0.02). Altria Group had a net margin of 24.87% and a return on equity of 49.42%. The company had revenue of $4.39 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.60 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $0.95 EPS. The business’s revenue was down 6.0% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts forecast that Altria Group Inc will post 4.17 earnings per share for the current year.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, July 10th. Stockholders of record on Friday, June 14th will be paid a dividend of $0.80 per share. This represents a $3.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 6.12%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, June 13th. Altria Group’s dividend payout ratio is presently 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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