GWM Advisors LLC grew its stake in Altria Group (NYSE:MO) by 21.5% in the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 69,246 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 12,250 shares during the quarter. Altria Group makes up 1.1% of GWM Advisors LLC’s portfolio, making the stock its 27th biggest holding. GWM Advisors LLC’s holdings in Altria Group were worth $4,994,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.
A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of the business. Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK increased its position in Altria Group by 3.2% in the first quarter. Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK now owns 553,046 shares of the company’s stock worth $39,498,000 after buying an additional 17,200 shares in the last quarter. Peapack Gladstone Financial Corp increased its position in Altria Group by 12.5% in the first quarter. Peapack Gladstone Financial Corp now owns 21,284 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,520,000 after buying an additional 2,362 shares in the last quarter. Arthur M. Cohen & Associates LLC purchased a new stake in Altria Group in the first quarter worth about $314,000. Private Advisor Group LLC increased its position in Altria Group by 9.8% in the first quarter. Private Advisor Group LLC now owns 248,849 shares of the company’s stock worth $17,894,000 after buying an additional 22,169 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Signature Financial Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Altria Group by 4.5% in the first quarter. Signature Financial Management Inc. now owns 8,132 shares of the company’s stock worth $579,000 after acquiring an additional 352 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 61.89% of the company’s stock.
In other news, CEO Martin J. Barrington sold 15,300 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $65.03, for a total value of $994,959.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 701,074 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $45,590,842.22. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. 0.11% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
A number of research firms have recently weighed in on MO. Vetr lowered Altria Group from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $69.00 price objective for the company. in a research note on Wednesday, September 6th. Berenberg Bank set a $72.00 price objective on Altria Group and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Sunday, August 6th. BidaskClub raised Altria Group from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Cowen and Company reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Altria Group in a research note on Sunday. Finally, UBS AG dropped their price objective on Altria Group from $78.00 to $72.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research note on Monday, July 31st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Altria Group currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $71.81.
Altria Group (MO) traded down 0.06% during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $62.46. The stock had a trading volume of 3,881,103 shares. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $65.03 and a 200-day moving average of $71.46. The company has a market cap of $120.42 billion, a PE ratio of 8.24 and a beta of 0.63. Altria Group has a 12-month low of $60.01 and a 12-month high of $77.79.
Altria Group (NYSE:MO) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The company reported $0.85 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.86 by ($0.01). The company had revenue of $4.37 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.02 billion. Altria Group had a return on equity of 59.50% and a net margin of 56.98%. Altria Group’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.81 EPS. Equities research analysts forecast that Altria Group will post $3.26 EPS for the current year.
Altria Group announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase plan on Thursday, July 27th that allows the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the company to buy up to 0.7% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 10th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be given a $0.66 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 14th. This represents a $2.64 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.22%. This is an increase from Altria Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.61. Altria Group’s payout ratio is presently 32.19%.
Altria Group Company Profile
Altria Group, Inc is a holding company. The Company’s segments include smokeable products, smokeless products and wine. The Company’s subsidiaries include Philip Morris USA Inc (PM USA), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes in the United States; John Middleton Co (Middleton), which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of machine-made cigars and pipe tobacco, and UST LLC (UST), which, through its subsidiaries, including U.S.
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